Dimi Mascarenhas back to boost Hampshire

Dimi Mascarenhas

Hampshire all-rounder Dimi Mascarenhas has handed the county a boost by returning early from India.

Mascarenhas, 35, played just once for Kings XI Punjab so brought his time in the Indian Premier League to an end.

He goes straight into the squad to face Durham on Sunday in the Yorkshire Bank 40 clash as Hampshire look to get back to winning ways after their loss to Surrey on 6 May.

"I can't wait to get stuck in," Mascarenhas told BBC Radio Solent.

Defending champions Hampshire have won two and lost one of their opening YB40 group games this season and Mascarenhas hopes his return will have a positive impact.

"The boys have started the season pretty well," he said.

"We need to keep going as we have two huge games in the pro 40 so hopefully I can get in there and make an impact."

Mascarenhas, who spent the winter recovering from a shoulder injury before flying to Australia to play for the Melbourne Stars in the Big Bash, says the decision to return home early was an easy one.

Having been the first English player in the IPL, back in 2008, he also admitted he does not know if he will return to play next year.

"I wasn't playing," he explained. "I played one game and I thought it be best to come back early and play some cricket. I'm not getting any younger so just want to play as much cricket at this stage of my career.

"They were pretty understanding. He knows with the season going on I do lose money if I'm not here playing so he left the decision up to me.

"It was pretty frustrating but that is the way it goes. There are four overseas players allowed in each team and it would have been nice to play a few more games as I feel my IPL record is good

"I don't know (about returning), I just want to get through this season and see how the body is. I'm not getting any younger I just want to keep playing and contributing."

Durham have won one, drawn one and lost one of their opening YB40 matches and Mascarenhas is expecting a stern challenge.

"It's a huge game, we have a tough group again," he said. "Durham are a seriously good side so we want to get the edge over them here at home.

"Our boys look like they are in some pretty good form, we lost our last game against Surrey and we will be looking to bounce back against Durham."

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