Haseeb Azam

The NCU club have confirmed the signing of Haseeb Azam, a Pakistani all-rounder, as the successor to Shaheen Khan, who was not able to return because of eligibility issues. The reigning Irish Cup, Challenge Cup and Twenty20 Cup holders had initially signed up South African paceman Corné Dry but they turned to Azam because Dry was going to be unavailable for a significant portion of the summer. Captain Greg Thompson said: “It’s great to have Haseeb at the club. Shaheen was with us for the last two years, three years in total, and did a fantastic job. From what I have seen and heard about Haseeb, it looks like we have got another top performer.

“Hopefully he will fit in well at the club and help us push for further honours. I know he’s also a keen coach, so he’ll be a real asset with the juniors programmes.” Azam’s signing has already been ratified by Cricket Ireland he will be arriving in Northern Ireland before the start of the new season next month. The 32-year-old plays for Rawalpindi. He was the joint-leading wicket-taker in the 2018–19 Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, with 32 dismissals in six matches. He has taken 199 first-class wickets in 54 matches with an average of 21.37. He averages 21.54 with the bat, having made seven fifties and one century.