In a surprising move, Indian leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal, omitted from both the Asia Cup and ODI World Cup squads, has inked a deal with Kent for their upcoming County Championship matches in England. However, his participation is contingent upon regulatory approval.
Chahal will be eligible for selection in Kent's last three County Championship matches of the season. These include two home matches against Nottinghamshire and Lancashire, as well as an away fixture against Somerset.
Indian Presence in Kent
Chahal will become the second Indian international to feature for Kent in the current season.
Earlier, left-arm seamer Arshdeep Singh represented the club in the County Championship competition in June and July, where he impressively took 13 wickets in eight innings.
Expressing his enthusiasm, Chahal stated, "This is an exciting challenge for me, playing in English county cricket, and one I’m very much looking forward to."
His signing comes at a critical juncture for Kent, who are currently placed ninth in the Division One table and are at risk of relegation to Division Two.
Paul Downton, Kent's Director of Cricket, emphasized Chahal's value to the team, saying, "He is really looking forward to playing in English conditions and will bring a significant amount of skill and international experience to our squad."
While Chahal has amassed 87 wickets in 33 first-class matches, he has yet to play Test cricket for India. He has predominantly been a white-ball specialist, having taken 121 wickets from 72 ODIs at an average of 27.13. Additionally, he boasts 96 wickets from 80 T20Is with an economy rate of 8.19.
Other Indians in County Cricket
Chahal participated in two games for Haryana during the last season of the Ranji Trophy, securing three wickets at an average of 92.33.
Apart from Chahal, Cheteshwar Pujara and Jaydev Unadkat will be plying their trade for Sussex while Jayant Yadav is scheduled to join Middlesex once his visa issues are resolved.
Also, B Sai Sudharsan has joined Surrey while Umesh Yadav will be turning out for Essex for the remaining time in the County Championship.