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Pakistan’s Mir Hamza signs up with Glamorgan for start of County Championship season

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New Delhi, March 1 (IANS) Pakistan’s left-arm fast-bowler Mir Hamza has signed up with Glamorgan for the first seven County Championship matches of the upcoming season. Hamza has played five Tests for Pakistan, with his best bowling figures being 4-32 in the Boxing Day Test against Australia in 2023.

“I am thrilled to be joining Glamorgan for the County Championship this summer. It will be exciting to work with Grant (Bradburn, head coach) again after working with him with Pakistan, and I can’t wait to join up with the squad, get to training and help this great Club push for a positive start to the season.”

“I have heard many great things about Cardiff from my teammates who played there last summer and look forward to meeting all of the supporters,” said Hamza in a statement issued by the club.

Hamza has taken 434 wickets in first-class cricket at an average of just over 22, and has a similarly stellar record in T20 cricket, averaging 29 with the ball with his best figures being 4/9. He previously played for Sussex and Warwickshire in his earlier county cricket stints. “As a coach, I am excited for our group to add such an experienced performer in Mir Hamza. Having worked with Mir previously in Pakistan, I have full confidence that Mir will add huge value to our team both on and off the field,” said head coach Grant Bradburn, who was previously Pakistan’s batting coach.

“It’s excellent news that Mir has agreed to join us at the start of the season. He’s an international bowler with a fine record and previous experience in County cricket. We’re looking forward to welcoming him to Cardiff,” said Mark Wallace, Director of Cricket, Glamorgan.

The club also announced that it has also signed England leg-spinner Mason Crane from Hampshire on a season-long loan. Crane played a Test and two T20Is for England, with his last international appearance coming in 2018. He won the T20 Blast with Hampshire in 2022 and has also played for London Spirit in The Hundred. “I’m very thankful for the opportunity at Glamorgan and incredibly excited to get to work and push towards a successful season with the team,” said Crane.

Bradburn feels the signing of Crane will help the team get the right balance in many ways. “Our strategy is to build a balanced squad to enable us to win in multiple ways. Securing a player of Mason’s quality and experience will certainly add nicely to that strategy.”

"Mason joins us with a strong reputation and first-class record behind him and we aim to provide Mason the environment and opportunity for him to thrive with Glamorgan. We look forward to welcoming Mason to our squad as we look to set a new course for success.”

Crane has made a total of 154 appearances for Hampshire since making his debut in 2015. “Mason hasn’t had the game time here at Hampshire over the last couple of years and time with Glamorgan offers him the opportunity to play First XI cricket across the formats.” “Having had many conversations with him, we both feel that this is the best for his career and the development of his game. The deal is structured in a way that allows his return if we need him later in the season,” said Giles White, Hampshire Director of Cricket.

--IANS

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