WORCESTERSHIRE'S new overseas star says he "can't wait to get started" at New Road.

In a video message, Azhar Ali said New Road was an "iconic venue" in the world of cricket ahead of his stint this summer.

In the message, he said: "I am so excited to be joining Worcestershire for the County Championship this season.

"I can't wait to play at New Road - it is such an iconic venue in the world of cricket. See you all soon."

Former Pakistan captain Azhar has played 91 Tests for his country spanning 11 years since making his debut in 2010 and has scored 6721 runs at an average of 42.53 with 18 centuries.

The right-hander was signed by the club after the original overseas signing, Australia's Matthew Wade, was picked up in the IPL draft.

Azhar will be available for every round of the County Championship this summer.

He already has experience of County Championship cricket, through three spells at Somerset, and he scored a century against Worcestershire on his debut at Taunton in 2018.

He is set for his Worcestershire debut in the opening County Championship game against Leicestershire at the Uptonsteel County Ground beginning on April 7.

Worcestershire supporters will have the first opportunity to see Ali in action at New Road against Sussex in a game that gets underway on April 21.

Worcestershire Cricket Steering Group Paul Pridgeon said: “I think it is a fantastic signing and Alex Gidman is delighted.

“His record in Test cricket is outstanding, and he offers great experience and is of high quality.

“He has got a lot going for him, and it is excellent as well that we’ve got someone available to play County Championship cricket all summer. It gives us that stability.

“Azhar will be great in the dressing room as well and will also be able to pass on some good information and experience to the young lads.

“We spoke to Andy Hurry, the Somerset head coach, and he said Azhar is singularly the nicest human being you could ever come across.

“The fact he has played county cricket already so knows all about English conditions is another plus factor.”