ADIL RASHID has described as “nonsense” talk that he no longer wants to play for Yorkshire.
The World Cup winner insists that he is fully committed to the club despite suggestions to the contrary on social media.
There was a backlash on the Yorkshire Twitter feed last month when Rashid, two weeks after helping England to World Cup glory, announced that he was unfit to play for the county in the T20 Blast.
The 31-year-old pulled out with an injury to his bowling shoulder and has now been ruled out for the rest of the season, sparking another angry reaction from supporters yesterday.
Comments such as “get rid” and “no desire to play for Yorkshire whatsoever” littered Twitter in response to the news that Rashid will not feature again this year.
However, the player, who battled the injury during the World Cup only to say it has got progressively worse, maintains that nothing untoward should be read into his absence.
The leg-spinner had previously courted criticism from Yorkshire supporters for missing the County Championship decider against Middlesex at Lord’s in 2016, which he said was for family reasons, and for quitting red-ball cricket prior to the 2018 campaign only to reappear for England in the red-ball arena.
In an official Yorkshire CCC statement that made no mention of whether he will play Championship cricket again, Rashid, who is out of contract at the end of the season but still an important part of the club’s white-ball plans, said: “I’m genuinely disappointed not to be playing for Yorkshire, but hopefully I can do next year now.
“When I can, I’ll play. I just wasn’t anywhere near fit enough to play.
“People may have other views, but I just can’t play.
“Any other talk is nonsense.
“I enjoy playing cricket and enjoy playing for Yorkshire, but this year it wasn’t possible with how the shoulder is.
“I’ve had a shoulder problem for a little while, and I got through the World Cup with an injection.
“Obviously, as time has gone on, the injection has worn out and, after the World Cup, I started feeling a bit of a pinch in my shoulder.
“These things can happen, and fortunately it hasn’t happened to me earlier than it has.
“I’ve played 13-14 years of professional cricket, and this is the first time I’ve suffered an injury to my shoulder.
“I’m very confident, after being ruled out for the rest of the season, that I can get myself fully fit before we go away in the winter.
“I’ve got two months now to get myself fully fit and it’s as simple as that.”
Rashid, who underwent a scan on Tuesday, hopes to be part of the winter tours to New Zealand and South Africa.
His will now rehabilitate the injury under the care of England’s medical team.
“I’m confident, if I do things properly, I can get fully fit – not just for the winter, but for the rest of my career,” he said.
“My main aim is to get my shoulder fit, strong and powerful ahead of the winter.
“I’ll be in the gym, keeping fit and rehabbing my shoulder.
“Hopefully, once I get through that period, I can just continue playing cricket.”
Yorkshire had effectively already made provision for Rashid’s absence by re-signing fellow spinner Keshav Maharaj for the next two Championship games.
Maharaj, the 29-year-old South African left-armer, is also available for the rest of the T20 group stage and any quarter-final, while Yorkshire also have off-spinner Dom Bess on loan for the first 10 T20 group fixtures.
Martyn Moxon, Yorkshire’s director of cricket, said: “Obviously we’re very disappointed not to be able to call on the services of Adil for the rest of the season.
“However, it is clear that the problem with his shoulder needs clearing up with the long term in mind. Hopefully, he will be fit again as soon as possible.”