It is very rare to see Indian cricketers play in overseas tournaments, especially County cricket in England. But of late, the trend is changing. Though the BCCI hasn’t given permission for players to play in various T20 leagues around the world, it is an encouraging sign to see Indian players sign up for a County stint with the likes of R. Ashwin and Cheteshwar Pujara gaining vital experience in English conditions.
Out of the 289 Test, 218 ODI and 69 T20I International players to have played for India, only 35 (including Pujara and Ashwin) have played the County championship. And there are a few Indians who have done exceedingly well there.
Be it Farokh Engineer, Bishan Singh Bedi, who took a staggering 394 wickets for Northamptonshire, present India coach, Ravi Shastri, who played 60 games for Glamorgan scoring almost 3300 runs, it has helped the players improve their game.
In fact, it has helped several other famous Indian players in resurrecting their careers - among them Zaheer Khan, Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman and many others.
But here we look at 5 Indians you didn’t know played County cricket at some point in their careers.
#5 Piyush Chawla
Piyush Chawla made his first-class debut at the very young age of 17. He had already castled Sachin Tendulkar with a well-disguised googly in a Challenger Series match, which is one of his main weapons
Despite making his international debut in 2006 against England in a Test match, he failed to earn a permanent spot in the Indian team, but played in the county championship for a couple of seasons.
But since falling out of the reckoning for the national side in 2008, Chawla decided to try county cricket in 2010 when he signed up for Sussex. He picked up 36 wickets in 6 games in his first season, which helped him earn a recall to the Indian team for the T20 World Cup in 2010. He also went on to play the 2011 World Cup but was soon dropped again after poor performances in the mega event.
With the Uttar Pradesh leggie nowhere in the scheme of things in 2013, he went back to England for another County stint representing Somerset.
He played only four games, picking up 27 wickets in 2013. Chawla hasn't been able to add to his 3 Test, 25 ODI and 7 T20I international games but has been a regular member of KKR in the IPL since 2014 and has continued to represent Uttar Pradesh in the domestic circuit.