Sarwan close to signing contract with Leicestershire

Leicestershire are closing in on former West Indies batsman and captain Ramnaresh Sarwan as their main overseas player for the coming season.

The 31-year-old is expected to sign a contract next week that will see him play for Leicestershire in all three competitions with former Pakistan all-rounder Abdul Razzaq returning as the second overseas player for the Friends Life t20.

Leicestershire turned to Sarwan after former Pakistan batsman Mohammad Yousuf turned down the chance to join them. Yousuf’s request to sit out Ramadan, which takes up much of August, was a major obstacle to him agreeing personal terms.

Leicestershire are believed to have considered Australian pair Ed Cowan and Callum Ferguson as potential overseas recruits but restrictions on their likely availability meant they turned to the experienced Sarwan.

Sarwan has played 87 Tests and 173 one-day internationals but his last international appearance came against India in Barbados last July.

Leicestershire have been forced to seek a new overseas player because Australia all-rounder Andrew McDonald has played insufficient international cricket in the last five years to qualify for a work permit.

Sarwan already  has county experience with Gloucestershire for whom he played seven first-class matches in 2005, scoring 442 runs which included a century and two fifties.

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