Dimi Mascarenhas could yet return to four-day cricket after he was pushed even further down the Hampshire pecking order.
The popular all-rounder recently returned from the Indian Premier League and will lead the Royals in their forthcoming defence of the Friends Life t20 competition, which starts later this month.
But after the club completed the signing of Pakistan bowling all-rounder Sohail Tanvir this week, it now seems that Mascarenhas will be kept back for limited-overs matches.
However, manager Giles White said: ‘He might play more four-day cricket towards the end of the season.
‘It makes sense to keep him fresh.
‘We’ve seen over the past couple of years that Dimi has played less four-day cricket.
‘But he is such a wonderful part of our one-day team and he captains the t20 side so well, so that is our priority.
‘At the moment, we don’t feel he has got the overs under his belt to be confident of getting through a four-day game.
‘The important thing for Dimi right now is to get him through t20 and to have an influence in the one-day game.
‘We’ll see where we are after that – we may increase his workload if it’s right for the team.’
White also believes Tanvir is ready to show his ability in all forms during his Ageas Bowl stint.
He said: ‘A lot of people will know of him through t20 cricket, where he has had a lot of success around the world.
‘But his record in four-day cricket is very fine, too.
‘He might not be a household name but I think he fits into what we have here very well.
‘He is here until the end of the t20 and then we’ll see how it pans out after that, but we’re excited to have him.’