Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Yorkshire have signed India batsman Cheteshwar Pujara as their overseas player after Pakistan veteran Younis Khan opted out of his deal.
Khan decided to pull out of his deal after expressing his eagerness to represent Pakistan during their upcoming tour of Bangladesh.
However, Yorkshire’s director of cricket Martyn Moxon was disappointed that Khan opted out of his deal at the very last moment.
“It is very disappointing, at this late stage, to pull out of the agreement with Younis,” he said. “When the deal was agreed initially, it was on the understanding that Younis would not tour Bangladesh with Pakistan. Younis made it clear to us on Sunday that he would find it difficult to turn down should he be selected.
“At this late stage that is no good to us. We had to make a decision and as result we have decided to cancel his contract.
But, Moxon was pleased to have secured the services of Pujara at such short notice, especially since the Indian batsman has scored 2,073 Test runs at a superb average of 47.11.
“We have moved quickly to bring in Pujara and he is a superb player,” Moxon said. “He is an outstanding young Test cricketer, who is hungry to perform in the English game. In the brief conversations I have had with him, he is very much looking forward to be joining Yorkshire and being part of our plans.
“He is a classy right-hander that likes to dominate the crease and he will be a big asset for us during the early part of the new campaign.
“He speaks fondly of wanting to play for Yorkshire and we are looking forward to welcoming him to Headingley and hopefully he can make an impression in the first month of the season with us.”
Pujara himself was delighted to have joined Yorkshire after a short, but successful, stint with Derbyshire at the end of last year’s county season.
“I’m very excited to be signing for Yorkshire,” he said. “I was looking to return to the UK after my previous experience of county cricket, which I greatly enjoyed and when Yorkshire made the offer I didn’t think twice.
“To wear the same white rose Sachin Tendulkar did is going to be a great feeling for me. I hope I can contribute to further success.”