Somerset has added one more number to their count of Pakistan Players by signing Imam-ul-Haq as Matt Renshaw’s replacement for the final four games of the County Championship Season 2022. Renshaw is returning home to join the pre-season campaign with his State team Queensland for the upcoming season of Sheffield Shield.
The club already has two Pakistan players Babar Azam & Azhar Ali in the line-up as overseas signings. Now with Haq joining the set-up, the count of Pakistani players in the club comes to three.
Further Somerset’s director of cricket, Andy Hurry said that on the basis of Somerset’s long-standing relationship with the PCB, they were able to sign Imam for the final four matches of County Championship 2022 subject to a No-Objection Certificate and visa.
“Imam-ul-Haq is an outstanding batter who will bring quality and a wealth of experience to our environment,” Hurry said.
“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 caliber. We are genuinely excited about what he will add to the club both on and off the field.”
Imam-ul-Haq is one of the prolific batters produced by Pakistan cricket. Haq has played 14 Test & ODIs for the National team. He has scored 855 runs in Test format & 2520 runs in ODI format. In test format, his best score was 157 runs which came against Australia in Rawalpindi earlier this year. Imam-Ul-Haq became the first player in ODI history to score three tons in the first nine matches after registering three tons in an ODI series against Zimbabwe. He has also featured in 57 first-class matches amassing 3500 runs at an average of 41.99 with the highest score of an unbeaten 202. Imam’s recent form is alluring as he has amassed five fifties and two centuries in his last seven innings across the formats. He would aim at continuing his good form in his debut season of County Cricket.
Speaking about his signing by Somerset club, Imam said, “County Cricket is a challenge that I am relishing. 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.”
Coming to Somerset’s form in the Championship 2022, the club is placed at the ninth position in the 10-team Division One &with seven games still in hand. With the signing of Imam-Ul-Haq, the club would hope of improving its position in the County standings.