West Indies sensation Pooran powers up Stars line-up

The Melbourne Stars secure highly sought-after West Indian for six games across the New Year period, but Pakistan pace ace Haris Rauf won't return

The Melbourne Stars have signed West Indian dynamo Nicholas Pooran to play six matches in the KFC BBL this season.

The Windies' T20 vice-captain is currently in New Zealand for their matches against the Black Caps and will head to Australia for a short stint once his international commitments are finished.

While the powerful left-hander has not been named in the Windies' Test squad to face the Black Caps, it's expected he will remain with the touring party after the T20 matches (November 27-30) to get some red-ball experience during the Test campaign, which will run until December 15.

The BBL season begins on December 10, meaning Pooran will miss the opening stages of the tournament.

The recent creation of a Trans-Tasman travel bubble means Pooran won't be required to complete mandatory quarantine when he arrives in Australia as he's currently nearing the end of a quarantine period in New Zealand.

The Stars have confirmed Pooran will be available for six matches in December and January, joining English star Jonny Bairstow as the club's second international signing.

However, Pakistan pace ace Haris Rauf, who enjoyed a breakout BBL campaign last summer, won't return this season due to international commitments.

Rauf was this week named in Pakistan's extended squad to tour NZ after the Windies depart, with their campaign across the Tasman to run from December 18 to January 7.

The signing of Pooran, who can also keep wickets, adds to an already powerful top order at the Stars alongside Bairstow, Marcus Stoinis and Glenn Maxwell.

Pooran recently played alongside Maxwell at the Kings XI Punjab in the Indian Premier League, finishing the tournament with a strike rate of 165 and making global headlines for a sensational bit of boundary-line fielding.

Commentators lose it over Pooran’s boundary save

"Nick is an impressive player with some big gears who has been in demand in the IPL, the Caribbean Premier League and Pakistan Super League in addition to his West Indies duties for some time," said Stars coach, David Hussey.

"I'm looking forward to having his talents on our side this season."

The Stars are set to announce a third international signing next week.

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