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Date: 2nd May 2012
A Paul Edwards copyright exclusive for L&DCC Official Website.
Lancashire Lightning have strengthened their squad for the 2012 Friends Life t20 campaign with the recruitment of Pakistan all-rounder Yasir Arafat. The 30-year-old will join compatriot Junaid Khan as the Red Rose’s second overseas player for the tournament.
Yasir is an experienced cricketer who has played for Surrey, Sussex and Kent in domestic cricket, and has represented his country in Test and ODI cricket.
Commenting on the signing Lancashire Cricket Director Mike Watkinson said: “The addition of Yasir to our squad emphasises our determination to progress in the Friends Life t20 tournament and we are delighted to have him on board. Our squad doesn’t have the depth that we have been accustomed to and Yasir brings experience and skill to fulfil this important role for us.”
Head Coach Peter Moores added: “Yasir has a wealth of experience of playing in this country. He is a very experienced one-day bowler and a big hitter of the ball down the order. He will bring additional quality to our squad.”
Speaking on the PakPassion website Arafat looked forward to the prospect of helping Glen Chapple's side in their short-form campaign.
“I’m really pleased and excited at signing for such a famous team such as Lancashire," he said "They have a history of winning tournaments and I hope I can perform well for them and help them do well in the Friends Life T20 competition this season. Lancashire are a strong all-round side with some very experienced cricketers as well as young, up and coming players and they also has a very good coach in Peter Moores. This opportunity is a fantastic one and I had no hesitation in signing."
Arafat last played for Pakistan over two years ago and he hopes that a good all-round performance for Lancashire might catch the eye of the selectors back home in Pakistan.
“I’ve been out of favour with the national side for more than two years and all I can do is to try and perform well and attempt to impress the selectors. I recently played in the domestic twenty-over tournament in Rawalpindi and have now been given an opportunity by Lancashire to play in English county cricket once again. I will of course give 100% effort and would dearly love to play in the Twenty20 World Cup later this year.”