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Somerset sign up Azhar Ali for 2019 county season

The Pakistan batsman, who made a big impression at Taunton during a brief stay last summer, will be available for the entirety of the club's County Championship and One-Day Cup campaigns

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Azhar Ali will return to Somerset in 2019.

The Pakistan batsman, who made a big impression at Taunton during a brief stay last summer, will be available for the entirety of the club's County Championship and One-Day Cup campaigns.

Ali recently retired from ODI cricket, meaning he will not be involved in the World Cup, a further reason for Somerset to sign him up as early as possible.

The 33-year-old has 10,903 career first-class runs and made more than 400 in the Championship last term.

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Azhar Ali and Dom Bess

He said: "I very much enjoyed my time with the club this year and I am really pleased to be going back. Somerset is a special club and it was a pleasure to play for them in 2018.

"There was a really good atmosphere in the dressing room and there are some very good players at the club. The supporters were excellent, and I look forward to seeing everyone again next year."

Somerset director of cricket Andy Hurry said: "We are delighted to have secured a player of Azhar’s quality and experience for the duration of the summer and having him available for all our Specsavers County Championship and Royal London One-Day Cup fixtures fits our needs perfectly.

"Azhar fitted in seamlessly during his time with us towards the back end of the 2018 season. Knowing the positive impact that he will have both on and off the field, alongside his availability all summer were key factors in wanting to secure him."

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