Australia offspinner Nathan Lyon said he was relishing “a fabulous opportunity” after agreeing a deal to become Hampshire’s overseas player in next season’s County Championship. The 31-year-old, a key member of Australia’s Test team during the recent Ashes series, played a handful of games for Worcestershire in 2017, but this will be his first foray into the 10-team Division One.

“I very much look forward to playing with Hampshire in next year’s County Championship. It is a fabulous opportunity to be involved with a leading county who have had a long and successful relationship with Australian cricketers,” Lyon told the Hampshire website.

“I love playing cricket in England and no doubt will enjoy the 2020 summer with the Hampshire players, coaches, members and supporters. We will all be focused on winning the County Championship in 2020 – I can’t wait.”

Lyon is the latest Australian to sign with an English county for the 2020 season, with Travis Head joining Sussex, Cameron Bancroft at Durham and Peter Siddle returning to Essex.

“Nathan is a really high-class spinner and we identified him in the summer as someone who would be a great addition to our Championship side,” Hampshire’s director of cricket Giles White said.

“He has a real appetite for county cricket and is keen to be a part of what we’re trying to do here, so we’re delighted to secure his signature and we can’t wait to have him on board next summer. If you look at our bowling attack at the moment, the gap has maybe been taking wickets with spinners.