Lancashire Cricket has signed the Indian international batsman Shreyas Iyer for this summer’s 2021 Royal London Cup competition in a move that will also boost the Red Rose county’s objectives to grow its brand in the country.
Iyer will arrive at Emirates Old Trafford on Thursday 15 July ahead of the start of the 50 over tournament and will remain with the Red Rose for the duration of the month-long group stage.
Fresh from playing all five matches in India’s successful T20 series against England, 26-year-old Iyer is a star name of the Indian Premier League (IPL) and captained Delhi Capitals to the final in last year’s tournament.
Shreyas signing signals the latest step in Lancashire’s long association with Indian cricket, which stretches back more than 50 years when Indian International wicketkeeper batsman Farokh Engineer joined the county in 1968. He would go on to become a Lancashire legend and now serves as a Vice-President of the Club. Since Engineer retired, four further Indian Internationals – Murali Kartik, Dinesh Mongia, V.V.S. Laxman and Sourav Ganguly – have represented the Red Rose with distinction.
More recently, Lancashire Cricket has continued its multi-layered strategic relationship by hosting last year’s pre-season training camp in Mumbai and, in a first for an English County, during 2020 Lancashire Cricket matches were streamed live to Indian fans on the subcontinent via the popular JioTV.
Lancashire Cricket, Chief Executive, Daniel Gidney, said: “This is a historic day for not only for the Red Rose, but for domestic cricket in the UK. Signing India players for white-ball competitions does not happen very often, so to sign one of India’s leading batsmen, the Delhi Capitals skipper, for our Royal London Cup is huge for us. Lancashire has a long-held association with Indian cricket and Shreyas’ arrival is the latest chapter in this relationship.”
“As well as the fantastic players who have represented Lancashire with distinction over the years, we’ve fostered a deep strategic alliance with a nation that lives and breathes cricket like no other on the planet. In early 2020, we staged our pre-season training camp in Mumbai and used the opportunity to further strengthen our relationships with a range of local partners in collaboration with VisitBritain and the Manchester India Partnership. We also made the ground-breaking move to live stream our matches and content to Indian audiences via the JioTV online platform, becoming the first English County to do so.
“Shreyas’ signing, alongside our hosting of the England versus India Test Match in September, gives us a huge boost as we continue to build strategic relationships that help the Club, and our brand, grow on the subcontinent. To celebrate these milestones, we will be hosting a series of special Indian Summer events during 2021 with more details to follow soon.”
Speaking after agreeing to join Lancashire, Shreyas Iyer said: “Lancashire is a legendary name in English Cricket with a long-standing association with Indian Cricket. I am extremely humbled and honoured to carry the legacy forward of greats like Farokh Engineer, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman at Lancashire.
“Emirates Old Trafford is a world class international stadium and I am looking forward to meeting my teammates and the supporters of the Club.”
In anticipation of the England v India Test Match Series at Emirates Old Trafford from 10-14 September, and as celebration of Shreyas’ arrival, Lancashire Cricket will be hosting a special Indian Summer events schedule during 2021. A series of events will take place that aim to bring the energy and excitement that Indian cricket supporters are famous for to Emirates Old Trafford on a regular basis.