“It’s a great opportunity for me and I’m really thankfully to Northamptonshire for giving me this chance to express myself here,” Shaw was quoted as saying in a media release. “It’s going to be amazing I think and I’m really looking forward to it.”
Shaw has a formidable record in List A cricket. He averages 52.54 across 53 innings that have brought him 2627 runs. These include eight hundreds and 11 half-centuries, with a highest of 227 not out in February 2021.
Shaw is currently out of favour as far as national selection goes, having been ignored for the West Indies T20Is as well as India’s Asian Games squad. He last played for India on the tour of Sri Lanka in July 2021, and was most-recently part of the squad earlier this year for the T20Is at home against New Zealand. That was followed by a disappointing IPL 2023, during which he was dropped midway through the competition.
He was most recently in action in India’s season-opening first-class competition, the Duleep Trophy, where he made one half-century in four innings. Shaw was subsequently permitted to miss the Deodhar Trophy, the zonal 50-over competition, to allow him to play in England.
“The goal for me wherever I play is about the team,” Shaw said. “So winning games for Northamptonshire is the first goal for this season and then it’s about scoring as many runs as I can, I just want to give 100%.”
John Sadler, Northamptonshire’s head coach, hopes a hungry Shaw, who is “coming over with a point to prove”, will lend “high class” to the team.
“He’s coming over with a point to prove and to enhance his own game. He’s had some pressure on his shoulders for some time living up to the expectation of his career so far, he’s probably fallen off the radar a little but he’s very, very hungry to come and get himself back to his very best and get back into the India team.”
Shaw is the fifth Indian to feature in the county circuit in England this year after Cheteshwar Pujara (Sussex), Ajinkya Rahane (Leicestershire), Arshdeep Singh (Kent) and Navdeep Saini (Worcestershire).
There was a possibility of a sixth signing, with India allrounder Vijay Shankar potentially lining up a gig with Kent as a replacement for Arshdeep, who will join the Indian team in the Caribbean for the T20I series. However, the deal is believed to have fallen through due to visa issues. Shankar is currently playing league cricket in Chennai.