India batsman Ajinkya Rahane has signed up with English county side Hampshire, becoming the first-ever Indian cricketer to represent Hampshire.

He will feature in eight Specsavers County Championship fixtures throughout May, June and start of July, subject to visa clearance. The Mumbai-based cricketer will replace South African Aiden Markram, who will join the national team for the World Cup.

“I am excited to be the first Indian to play for Hampshire, a county which has a glowing reputation. I hope to score runs and win as a team. I would like to thank the BCCI for allowing me to play,” Rahane said.

“Ajinkya showed an interest early in on and the way things have played out, it’s a great opportunity to get him over. We are really excited to have him with us,” Giles White, Director of Cricket at Hampshire, said.