Hampshire are considering not having an overseas player for the last two months of the season following confirmation of Saeed Ajmal’s unavailability.
The Royals announced the signing of the spin sensation in December, but he is now unavailable due to Pakistan’s tour of Zimbabwe next month.
Sohail Tanvir is likely to be involved in the Sri Lanka Premier League in August, so manager Giles White admits the county may have to do without an overseas signing.
He said: “We’ll see how we go in the next couple of weeks, there are a few irons in the fire and we’re talking to Sohail, but his contract runs to the end of the Twenty20 at the moment and he’s linked with a Sri Lanka Premier League side after his stint with us.”
George Bailey will be involved with Australia’s limited-overs squad from late August (he will be captaining his country against England in the first of the two T20 internationals at the Ageas Bowl on the 29th before returning for the fifth and final ODI on September 16).
“I never rule George out, we’ll just have to see where we are as a team in terms of what personnel we’ve got and where we are in different competitions, then make a call,” said White, before admitting that Hampshire may have to do without an overseas player for the business end of the season.
“Absolutely, that’s another option,” he continued. “There are lots of different parts to the decision but in a couple of weeks we’ll be clear what way we’re heading.”
Hampshire will be without Sohail Tanvir for two of their last three Friends Life t20 group games - at home to Essex on the 26th and the penultimate rubber against Kent at Canterbury - due to Pakistan’s two T20 internationals in the West Indies at the end of the month.
But Saeed, his compatriot, is not now expected to play for Hampshire at all. “It’s clear now he’s unlikely to be here,” confirmed White.
“He’ll be involved in Pakistan’s tour to Zimbabwe, which is as definite as it can be. It’s a blow but we felt that was probably going to be the case from a long way out “It’s becoming harder and harder for counties, even in the short time I’ve been in the job, to find an overseas player that’s going to be right and available for the whole season.”
Meanwhile, Hampshire have named an unchanged 12-man squad for tomorrow night’s FLt20 South Group clash against Sussex at Hove (7pm).
Hampshire (from): Vince, Carberry, Adams, McKenzie, Dawson, Ervine, Wheater, Mascarenhas, Tanvir, Wood, Briggs, Griffiths.