Younis Khan signs for Warwickshire

Warwickshire have taken the first step towards shoring up their collapsible batting
by signing former Pakistan batsman Younis Khan as their overseas player
for the next two seasons.

Younis replaces leg-spinner Imran Tahir, who took 56 County Championship wickets in his only season at Edgbaston but who had signed a contract to rejoin Hampshire for 2011 before he signed for Warwickshire.

Younis, 32, has already had stints in county cricket with Nottinghamshire, Yorkshire and, most recently, Surrey and brings with him vast international experience having played 63 Tests and 202 one-day internationals.

Warwickshire expect Younis to be available to them for all cricket during the duration of his contract but the situation may have been complicated by recent calls by Pakistan’s one-day captain Shahid Afridi for him to becalled to the Test team.

Younis has not played a Test match for more than a year and was banned for life by the Pakistan in March for alleged infighting which damaged team spirit on last winter’s disastrous tour of Australia.

The draconian penalty was subsequently overturned on appeal but Younis has not yet been recalled to international cricket.

Only last week Younis was quoted as saying that he wanted to impress in Pakistan domestic cricket with a view to reclaiming his place in Pakistan’s national squad for the forthcoming ‘home’ series against South Africa in the United Arab Emirates.

“I am available for the national team whenever required and will play with the same energy and passion if given the chance,” said Younis.

“I’m spending time at the training ground to keep myself fit. I’ll also play for my team in the domestic season starting soon in order to become match fit.”

Warwickshire hope that Younis will fill one of the sizeable holes that were left in their batting line-up last season when Ian Bell and Jonathan Trott were frequently away on England duty.

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