Melbourne Renegades on Thursday announced the signing of Unmukt Chand for the 2021-22 season of the Big Bash League. The 28-year-old batter becomes the first Indian player to feature in the Australian T20 extravaganza.

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Unmukt retired from cricket earlier this year to play league cricket in the U.S. The captain of the national team that won the U-19 World Cup in 2012, Unmukt has played domestic cricket for Delhi and Uttarakhand.

Elated at the opportunity to play the BBL, Unmukt said, "It's great to be a part of the Melbourne Renegades family. Really looking forward to come to Melbourne. I've always been following the Big Bash League; it's a great opportunity for me to play some good cricket."

He added: "I know for a fact that there are lots of Indians in Melbourne and I hope the crowds turn up for the games as well."

Renegades head coach David Saker was happy to have Unmukt on board.

"We're delighted to have Unmukt joining the Renegades and see him being an important part of our group."

"He brings a wealth of cricket experience. To have a player joining our team who has represented three IPL teams and led his country at 'A' and Under 19 level is fantastic.

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"As a batter, Unmukt is dynamic and can change games quickly. He has spent much of his career at the top of the order, but we believe he has the flexibility to fill a variety of roles as we need."

Unmukt has played 67 first-class matches, 120 List A matches, and 77 T20 matches in his career. His last first-class match was in January, 2020, when he turned out for Uttarakhand against Haryana in Dehradun.

Unmukt has also played the Indian Premier League, representing Delhi Daredevils (now Delhi Capitals), Rajasthan Royals and Mumbai Indians.

(With inputs from PTI)