English domestic cricket side Somerset on Monday announced that they have signed Pakistan batter Imam-ul-Haq for the final four County Championship matches of this season, against Gloucestershire, Warwickshire, Northamptonshire and Kent.
Imam will replace Australia batter Matt Renshaw, who is returning home to join the pre-season camp for the upcoming Sheffield Shield season with his state side Queensland. He also becomes the third player from Pakistan with the club after captain Babar Azam and senior batter Azhar Ali.
“I have heard a lot about the quality of Somerset from Babar Azam and Azhar Ali. It is a club with a good reputation and great support. I look forward to representing the county and contributing to some good wins in the County Championship. English County Cricket will be a new challenge for me, but it is a challenge that I am relishing,” said Imam.
Imam has featured in 14 Tests for Pakistan, with a best score of 157 against Australia at Rawalpindi earlier this year. In 57 first-class matches, the left-hander has amassed over 3,500 runs at an average of 41.69 with a top score of 202 not out.
“Imam ul Haq is an outstanding batter who will bring quality and a wealth of experience to our environment. To be able to bring in an established Test match player for the final LV= Insurance County Championship matches of the season is a coup for us with so much international cricket being played during this important period.
“We have a long-standing working relationship with the PCB and we are grateful to them for their assistance in helping us to sign a player of this calibre. We are genuinely excited about what he will add to the Club both on and off the field,” said Andy Hurry, Somerset Director of Cricket.