India pacer Navdeep Saini returned with figures of 3 for 45 to put his county side Kent in a commanding position against Lancashire on the rain-affected first day.
On a day when only 34.2 overs were bowled, Saini registered figures of 3/45 in 11 overs as Lancashire reached 112 for 4 before play was abandoned due to rain on Monday.
India all-rounder Washington Sundar (6 not out) was at the crease along with skipper Steven Croft (21 not out).
Saini’s scalps included that of openers Luke Wells (35) and Keaton Jennings and Rob Jones, who was trapped leg before by the Indian off the very first ball he faced.
The 29-year-old Saini took two wickets from the fifth and sixth balls of the 28th over but was denied a hat-trick by Croft.
Saini has slipped off the radar as far as national reckoning is concerned. He was a net bowler for the Indian team ahead of its rescheduled fifth Test against England in Birmingham at the start of this month.
The fast bowler has represented his country in all forms of the game after making his T20I debut for India in August 2019.
He had picked up seven wickets (5/72 and 2/39) in Kent’s 177-run win over Warwickshire last week.
Saini is among the four leading India cricketers who are currently playing their trade in county championship. Cheteshwar Pujara (Sussex), Umesh Yadav (Middlesex) and Washington Sundar (Lancashire) are the other three.
India allrounder Krunal Pandya will soon be representing Warwickshire in the Royal One Day Championship as well.
Saini has signed up with Kent for three matches in County Championship and five Royal One Day Cup matches. He thus became the second India cricketer after the legendary Rahul Dravid to play for Kent.