Yorkshire sign Australian big-hitting batsman Aaron Finch for T20 Blast

Finch is also available for first-class cricket as he will share the overseas duties with New Zealander Kane Williamson

Yorkshire have announced the signing of Australia batsman Aaron Finch.

The 27-year-old, who holds the world record for an international Twenty20 innings after smashing 156 against England last summer, will arrive as soon as his participation in the Indian Premier League ends in May.

Finch, who also scored two ODI hundreds against England last month, is one of the game's most explosive short-form batsman but will also be available for first-class cricket as he shares overseas duties with New Zealand's Kane Williamson.

The pair will team up in the revamped NatWest T20 Blast, with Finch taking over from Williamson in all formats when he returns to Black Caps duty.

Finch, who once played club cricket for Clifton Alliance in the York Senior League, said: "It is a great honour to be joining Yorkshire this summer.

"This is one of the biggest cricket clubs in the world with a history and tradition second to none.

"When I heard Yorkshire were interested in signing me I had no hesitation."

Yorkshire's director of cricket Martyn Moxon is delighted to have secured Finch's services, with top-end talent at a premium this summer due to the elongated nature of the new T20 format.

"There are not many players in the world that can fill stadia, but we believe Aaron is certainly one of those box-office stars. The Yorkshire public are in for a treat.

"This signing shows our intent this year. We want to be among the best teams in one-day cricket and to have the services of one of the best batsmen in the world is a very exciting proposition.

"His statistics show what an explosive player he is.

"Hopefully the way he plays, he can get us off to really devastating starts hopefully and hopefully the rest of the lads can build on that.

"With Aaron's success against England this winter in the ODIs, we wanted to get him nailed down now. We're all delighted that he's agreed to join us."

Yorkshire captain Andrew Gale, meanwhile, is relishing the chance to bat with Finch.

"With the way he's been playing in Australia and that knock he played at Southampton last year, I think I'll just be getting off strike and watching him bat," he said.

"He's a guy who clears the rope and hits it into the upper tier 15 rows back. I'm really looking forward to batting with him."

PA

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