Saeed happy to make Worcestershire return

Saeed happy to make Worcestershire return

Saeed happy to make Worcestershire return

First published in Sport

SAEED Ajmal has revealed his love affair with Worcestershire and the faithful city – and his desire to play again for the County next season if international commitments permit.

The Pakistan spin star ended his current spell with the club after the 204-run win in LV= County Championship Division Two against Leicestershire at New Road last week.

Saeed ended with 63 wickets from his nine Championship appearances after claiming three more in Leicestershire’s second innings. He also took 12 wickets in the NatWest T20 Blast.

He admits to feeling happy and comfortable in the New Road environment and likes the relaxed nature of Worcester.

When asked if he wants to come back in 2015, Saeed said: “I want to play with Worcestershire. They are good youngsters and good coaches. That’s why I come here and play cricket.

“The city of Worcester is beautiful and I like it. There is no rush here, it is good and relaxed and I stay with my family and play cricket.

“London is a good city but I don’t like it. The rush is too much. I like a relaxed place where I can chill with the children and the families and play cricket.”

The 36-year-old added: “All the Worcester people are good. When I come into the ground, I am having a joke with people. They like me and I like them.

“For next year, let’s see how the schedule pans out but if I’m free, I’m coming to play for Worcestershire.”

Steve Rhodes has hailed the all-round contribution to Worcestershire of Saeed and is “optimistic” he will return to New Road next season.

Rhodes revealed that talks have already taken place about Saeed coming back for a third spell but insists his help in passing on knowledge to the younger players and assisting skipper Daryl Mitchell were also key ingredients.

The director of cricket said: “Saeed has been amazing. His wicket tally and economy rates in T20 have been outstanding and the amount of wickets he has taken in four-day cricket has been exceptional.

“But it’s more than that. This is a very young squad and one of the older guys in Moeen Ali hasn’t been playing much as well.

“His experience and help to Daryl Mitchell out on the field and almost father figure to the lads on the park has been outstanding.”

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