Kabir completes move to Hampshire
Hampshire have completed their exhaustive pursuit of fast bowler Kabir Ali on a three-year contract, following his release by Worcestershire yesterday.
The 29-year-old agreed upon similar terms with Hampshire in September, subject to his release by a county who wanted £60,000 compensation to pay off the last year of his existing contract.
The saga continued through much of the close-season, until Kabir did not appear at pre-season training, prompting Worcestershire to finally let him go.
Hampshire would not comment on the issue of compensation today.
Kabir’s arrival on the south coast sees him join a strong squad already bolstered by his former team-mate Simon Jones.
Kabir said: “Hampshire is a fantastic club with great ambition on and off the field and I am really excited about joining them.
“I have been working very hard on my fitness this winter and feel confident that I can play a major role for the team this summer.”
Since making his debut for Worcestershire in 1999, Kabir has taken 429 first-class wickets at a remarkable strike rate of 45.
His golden form in 2002 led to an England call-up for the Headingley Test match against South Africa in 2003, followed by 14 further one-day international caps.
However, mixed performances in a one-day home whitewash by Sri Lanka has left him sidelined since 2006, though he has led the attack for England Lions.
Kabir endured an injury-ravaged year in 2009, beset by back and hamstring problems, limiting him to just 11 wickets in four LV= County Championship matches.
With their leading fast bowler out for much of last season, Worcestershire did not win a single championship match and finished rock bottom of Division One.
Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove added: “Kabir is a dangerous and exciting cricketer and I am delighted that he has chosen to re-ignite his career here at Hampshire.
“Our squad is coming together nicely with a great blend of youth and experience and, with the new developments at the Rose Bowl well under way, this is a fantastic time to be a supporter of Hampshire.”