WORCESTERSHIRE have been given permission by New Zealand Cricket to extend paceman Mitchell McClenaghan’s spell at New Road through to the end of the season.

McClenaghan was initially contracted to the County for a six-week spell until the middle of August when it was thought spinner Saeed Ajmal would be returning to New Road for a second period after playing in the Caribbean Premier League.

But then Pakistan arranged a tour of Sri Lanka throughout August which ended Ajmal’s hopes of coming back to Worcestershire this summer and now McClenaghan will fill the overseas spot for a further five weeks.

It means he is available for the final three LV= County Championship Division Two matches of the season against Derbyshire (away), Surrey (home) and Essex (away).

McClenaghan finished as Worcestershire’s leading wicket-taker in the Royal London One-Day Cup with 10 victims in six games.

He picked up five wickets in the two LV= County Championship matches with Gloucestershire at Cheltenham and New Road with overall figures of 53-16-184-5.

Worcestershire chief executive David Leatherdale said: “Mitchell’s original deal meant he was here for six weeks because there was the possibility of Saeed coming back until Pakistan arranged a tour of Sri Lanka.

“Thankfully, New Zealand have allowed us to extend Mitchell’s stay through to the end of the season.

“It is something we discussed when he first signed but we have now got confirmation that can happen.

“He was happy to do it but we have to get a No Objection Certificate from New Zealand. They are more than happy for him to play.”