Overseas capture Farveez Maharoof has admitted that the opportunity to join up with Lancashire was too good to turn down.
The Sri Lankan arrived in England on Monday and met with the squad two days later after receiving international clearance to play for the Red Rose.
Despite a wealth of experience in club cricket abroad and in international cricket, Maharoof is yet to play county cricket, a challenge that the all-rounder is relishing.
The 26-year-old said: “I’m delighted to have this opportunity because I have never played county cricket before.
“I have come here before the end of the season in Sri Lanka because playing for Lancashire, which has such a great history and where great players have played, was too good an opportunity to turn down.
“So when I got the offer I had to make myself free.”
Maharoof has had a great insight into the Club from Sri Lankan legend and former Lancashire bowler Muttiah Muralitharan.
Since speaking with his compatriot, Lancashire’s newest acquisition has acclimatised to life in England quickly.
The all-rounder is now hoping that he can get used to the differing playing conditions in order to establish himself at Old Trafford.
He said: “I spoke to Murali before I came over and he said I would get along with the boys, they have been very welcoming. I have only been here a couple of days and I feel at home already.
“It is a learning process for me because I am from a different culture, but I am sure I will get used to it.
“The playing conditions back home are totally different and it will take some time to get used to them, but I should pick it up pretty soon and the English conditions suit me.
“I’ve got a fight on my hands to get in the side. If I get a chance I need to do well.”
Maharoof has aspirations of regaining his place with Sri Lanka after sustaining a knee injury last winter.
With Sri Lanka touring in England in the summer, strong performances for Lancashire could see Maharoof considered for a future call up from his country.
“[It is] almost nine months since I last played,” Maharoof mused. “In 2009 I was out for six months with a knee injury but from 2004 until then I was a consistent member of the team.
“That’s how it is when you are out and the guys who come in do well. But I am working hard to get back in there. I am still young so I can get back.
“The place I am fighting for, there are two other players going for it, the competition is tough.”
Coach Peter Moores believes that this hunger and desire to play on the international scene can only benefit Lancashire.
“The one thing I like about him is that he is over here for one reason which is that he wants to play cricket and move his game forward to get back into the Sri Lanka team,” said Moores. “That’s the best motivator for sure.”
Photo (c) Simon Pendrigh
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