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Lancashire Welcomes Back Junaid
Updated 10:11am Wednesday 23rd April 2014 in Sport
JUNAID Khan, the Pakistan international fast bowler, will return to Emirates Old Trafford this summer to play in Lancashire Lightning’s one day fixtures.
The 24-year-old became a hugely popular and successful member of the Lancashire squad in 2011 particularly on the back of his successful ‘death bowling’.
In eight Twenty20 matches, he took 12 wickets with a best of 3-12 against Derbyshire at Emirates Old Trafford. The Lightning won seven of those, including an impressive quarter-final win over much-fancied Sussex at Hove, as they reached Finals Day.
Arguably his most memorable performance, however, came in the clash against Northamptonshire at Wantage Road when Lancashire, defending just 110-9, won in a last over thriller.
Junaid returned 2-12 and defended only seven runs off the last over as the visitors won by three runs.
Because of his impressive performances in his first spell as a Lancashire player and the fact he is a left arm quick, he drew favourable comparisons with Club legend and compatriot Wasim Akram.
Junaid toured Zimbabwe with Pakistan late that summer, and he made his Test debut at Bulawayo.
In his second Test, against Sri Lanka at Abu Dhabi in October 2011, he took 5-38 from 14.1 overs - still his best haul from 16 Tests (he has taken a total of 56 wickets, including a total of four five-wicket hauls).
Prior to first joining Lancashire, the 24 year-old debuted in one-day international cricket against the West Indies at St Lucia. He has played a total of 45 one-day internationals, taking 73 wickets with a best of 4-12 against Ireland at Belfast in May 2011.
He returns to Lancashire in time for the club’s opening NatWest T20 Blast fixture against Nottinghamshire Outlaws on Friday 16 May at Trent Bridge.
The Pakistan Cricket Board have granted him permission to play in Lightning’s one day fixtures.
Cricket director Mike Watkinson said: “We are delighted to be bringing Junaid back to Lancashire following his memorable spell with us in 2011.
“He will join a well-balanced squad looking to compete in all competitions and will link up with us in time for our first NatWest T20 Blast fixtures in May.
“Following his time with us, he went on to become an established international with Pakistan and we are looking forward to him bringing that experience to Emirates Old Trafford as we aim to build on a good season in 2013.”
Junaid added: 'I had a really enjoyable time during my spell with Lancashire in 2011 and it was pleasing to be involved in such a successful season.
“I believe that my time there helped me grow into becoming an established international cricketer and I cannot wait to link up with my team mates at Emirates Old Trafford to hopefully have another successful campaign.”