Jayawardene joins Lancashire for T20 Blast

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

London [UK], May 8 (ANI): Lancashire on Monday signed former Sri Lanka batsman Mahela Jayawardene for this year's NatWest T20 Blast as a non-overseas player. Jayawardene qualifies by virtue of his Danish wife, Christina. Jayawardene is available for the whole competition, including the knockout stages, and will join up with the squad in July. Speaking about his signing, the 39-year-old said, "I'm very excited about joining Lancashire Lightning for the NatWest T20 Blast this summer. Lancashire is a huge county with a fine history in the game." There is a young group of players at the Club and I'm really looking forward to the opportunity to working with them and to be part of the T20 campaign this summer," the club website quoted him as saying. "I haven't won the NatWest T20 Blast in my career and it's a trophy I'd love to experience success in this summer with Lancashire Lightning," he added. The former Sri Lanka great played in 149 Tests, scoring nearly 12,000 runs at an average of just below 50, whilst he has made 448 ODI appearances as well as 55 T20I matches. In white-ball cricket across all formats, the Sri Lankan has over 14,000 runs and is widely recognised as one of the great batsman of all-time. After retiring from international cricket in 2015, Jayawardene has featured in T20 leagues around the world as a player and mentor. He has previously played in the NatWest T20 Blast with Sussex and Somerset, and is currently head coach of the Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Glen Chapple, Lancashire's head coach, said, "Mahela is a truly world class batsman who scores runs all around the wicket. He's a true competitor and a winner too, and I'm thrilled to be able to bring him into our squad for the NatWest T20 Blast later this summer. "He is a legend of the game and is one of the greatest batsman to have played cricket in the modern era. It will be a fantastic opportunity for our young players to learn off him and for our fans to watch one of the game's greats." added Chapple, whose team have their first home NatWest T20 Blast fixture against Leicestershire Foxes at Emirates Old Trafford on July 9. (ANI)