Somerset sign Lancashire paceman Sajid Mahmood on loan

Sajid Mahmood

Somerset have signed former England fast bowler Sajid Mahmood on loan from Lancashire for the rest of the season.

The 30-year-old made the last of his eight Test appearances during the Ashes tour of 2006-07.

He has been with Lancashire since 2002 but has not featured in a four-day match since May.

Mahmood will be available to face Sussex in the game starting on Tuesday at Taunton, but will not be eligible for T20 finals day on Saturday.

"It might well prove a timely boost to Saj and bring the best out of him," director of cricket Brian Rose told the club website.

Somerset have been dealing with an extensive injury list in recent games, and were missing seven first-team players in their CB40 victory over Scotland on Sunday.

Rose added: "We have signed Saj because of the experience he can provide at a time when we are short on troops.

"I noticed he was not being picked by Lancashire and, as we do not play them between now and the end of the season, the move was attractive to all parties.

"He is a proven quality performer, who can help us at a time when injuries have hit us hard."

Lancashire coach Peter Moores believes Mahmood, who has not played a first-team match since 14 June, will benefit from regular cricket in the closing month of the season.

He told BBC Radio Lancashire: "It's been difficult for him getting second-team cricket because we've had so much rain.

"It's a chance for him to go and play some competitive cricket and get back into the sort of form he wants to be in to compete for a place with us.

"Credit to Saj, he's kept going, he worked hard and he's bowling really well at the moment.

"But he's just getting a bit frustrated because he wants to play.

"If something happens here and we have to bring him back, we've got that option.

"He was an integral part last year in our Championship-winning side but it's been such a frustrating year for Saj.

"This is a chance for him and hopefully it creates a platform for him to show what he can do."

South African paceman Alfonso Thomas will not be risked against Sussex, in the hope his hamstring injury will have cleared by Saturday, when Somerset play their FL t20 semi-final against Hampshire in Cardiff.

George Dockrell, Craig Kieswetter, Jamie Overton and Craig Overton will also be absent for the Division One game as they are away on international duty.