Worcestershire Rapids have signed top New Zealand leg spinner, Ish Sodhi, as their second overseas player for this summer’s Vitality Blast.
The 28-year-old, who has played international cricket for the Black Caps in all formats, will replace Nepal spinner Sandeep Lamichhane who has been ruled out because of visa and passport issues.
Sodhi is available for the Blast’s entire group stages and is set to fly from New Zealand to England this weekend.
The Rapids first game is on Wednesday at home against Notts Outlaws for whom Sodhi played T20 cricket in 2017 and 2018.
Sodhi has to date played 17 Tests, 33 ODIs and 57 T20Is and in 2018 was the number one ranked T20I bowler in the ICC ratings.
He also has a wealth of T20 experience from playing in the, Indian Premier League, Big Bash League and Caribbean Premier League.
Worcestershire CCC Head Coach, Alex Gidman, is delighted to have signed a quality replacement in Sodhi.
He said: “It is a really good signing for us, a high class international player of the same skill set (a spinner) that we wanted to bring in as one of our overseas players for the Blast.
“Ish has vast experience in T20 cricket and the fact he has already played in the Blast (for Nottinghamshire) is an added bonus and I’m sure he will become a popular member of the group.
“It is also good that he can get here so quickly once we made it known we wanted to sign him.”
Worcestershire Cricket Steering Group Chairman, Paul Pridgeon, said: “Because of passport and visa issues Sandeep was already going to miss at least the first four games and probably more.
“But we are delighted that at such a late stage we have been able to sign a top notch, high quality replacement in Ish (Sodhi).
“He has done very well for New Zealand in white ball cricket and you don’t get to number one in the world without being something special.
“Everyone has put a lot of work this winter and in recent months in trying to ensure we signed a proven spinner for the Blast and we are delighted it has come to fruition.”
Sodhi will link up with the County’s other overseas T20 signing in Australian left arm paceman, Ben Dwarshuis who arrived in England last weekend.