MUMBAI, India (CMC) — West Indies batsman Marlon Samuels has signed a two-year deal with Indian Premier League side Pune Warriors.
The attractive right-hander, currently a member of the West Indies setup, is expected to play the first 10 matches of the IPL season which bowls off April 4 and runs until May 27.
This means Samuels could be unavailable for Windies duty at some stage as the IPL season clashes with Australia's tour of the Caribbean from March 16 to April 27.
Samuels was ignored in the IPL auction held earlier this month but Pune moved for the 31-year-old as their first purchase, after they had boycotted the auction.
They beat out IPL heavyweights Mumbai Indians who reports indicate were also pursuing Samuels as a replacement for Australian Andrew Symonds who retired from all forms of cricket last week.
Since his return to international cricket a year ago following a two-year ban for inappropriate ties to a bookmaker, Samuels has met with plenty success.
He has scored four half-centuries in eight Tests and has also become a regular member of the one-day and Twenty20 units.
Samuels is currently representing Duronto Rajshahi in the Bangladesh Premier League T20 tournament.
He is the second current Windies Test player to sign an IPL contract after young stroke-maker Darren Bravo was picked up by Deccan Chargers in the auction for US$100,000.