Pakistan international player signs for Sussex CCC

Yasir Arafat will return Sussex County Cricket Club as their overseas player for this season’s NatWest T20 Blast tournament.

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The all-rounder who has played in all three formats of the game internationally for Pakistan and he’s also currently the all-time leading wicket taker in England’s domestic Twenty20 tournament.

The 31-year-old has represented five counties, including spells at Hove in 2006, 2009 and 2010 – helping the Sharks lift the trophy in 2009.

On his return to Hove Arafat said: “I am very happy to be signing for Sussex again as I know everyone so well.

“Last year was a very good year for me and I am very grateful to Somerset for the honour of playing for them, but the opportunity to re-join my old team-mates at Sussex is something I am really looking forward to.”

Arafat has a wealth of experience having played in several countries’ domestic tournaments around the globe and he is currently representing Perth Scorchers in Australia’s Big Bash League.

In all, he has played 171 Twenty20 matches, taking 219 wickets at an average slightly under 21, whilst also scoring over 1000 runs in the lower order.

Sussex Captain Ed Joyce said: “Yasir is a proven performer in the shorter form of the game and was a huge part in us winning the Twenty20 in 2009 and qualifying for the Champions League that year.

“He’s probably best known for his bowling at the death in pressure situations and he will hopefully plug a gap for us in that department.

“This all adds up to him being a great signing for us and we’re all looking forward to welcoming him back into the squad”.

The new structure of this year’s tournament sees NatWest T20 Blast group matches run from mid-May until late July and he will be available for the whole group campaign. He will have the advantage of being based in the UK, as he now lives locally in Kent.