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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Washington Sundar likely to play for Lancashire this season

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New Delhi, June 21 (Ajit Weekly News) India all-rounder Washington Sundar, who is currently out of action due to a hand injury, will likely play for Lancashire in county cricket this season, subject to fitness and visa clearance.

The 22-year-old Washington could be available for up to three County Championship games from July, and the entire 50-over Royal London Cup. He could become the second Indian to feature in English county cricket this season after Cheteshwar Pujara, who scored 720 runs in eight innings at a stunning average of 120 for Sussex in division two.

Lancashire are currently third on the County Championship division one points table, behind Surrey and Hampshire, with 108 points. They will resume red-ball cricket with a clash against Gloucestershire from June 26 after their Vitality Blast T20 games.

Washington is working his way back from a hand injury at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru. The red-ball games in England will be his first since he sustained a finger injury while playing a three-day tour game against a County Select XI in Chester-le-Street in July 2021. The injury had sidelined him from that England tour and the second leg of IPL 2021, an ESPNcricinfo report said on Tuesday.

The all-rounder has suffered multiple setbacks because of injury and illness since last year. He was set to return to action for his state Tamil Nadu in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, but it is understood that the Indian team management had then warned Tamil Nadu against rushing him back into action.

He then made a successful return in the Vijay Hazare Trophy, taking 16 wickets in eight games at an economy rate of 4.77 in Tamil Nadu’s run to the final, which paved the way for his India white-ball return, for a three-match ODI series in South Africa, but he had to miss that after testing positive for Covid-19.

Washington marked his comeback with all-round contributions at home in the ODI series against West Indies, but that was short-lived, too, as he sustained a hamstring injury ahead of the T20Is. And even in IPL 2022, he hurt his webbing twice and played just nine games for Sunrisers Hyderabad, scoring 101 runs and claiming six wickets.

Washington’s Lancashire stint will clash with the Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL), which kicks off on June 23 in Tirunelveli. The left-hander batter is with Salem Spartans in the TNPL, but it is understood that he did not take part in the side’s preparatory camp in Chennai and the red-ball games for Lancashire could be his opportunity to prove his form and fitness.

–Ajit Weekly News

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