JOSH POYSDEN has been taking advantage of the World Cup coming to Headingley by picking the brains of the world’s best leg-spinner at present, Rashid Khan.

The Yorkshire leggie sought out the 20-year-old Afghanistan star at Thursday’s training session ahead of their clash with Pakistan in Leeds on Saturday.

Poysden, 27, offered himself up as a net bowler for the Afghans, something which he did a lot of earlier in his career.

“When I was younger, I did a lot of net bowling, especially at the England guys,” he explained. “When I’ve been in Sydney in the winters, I’ve bowled at the Big Bash teams and New South Wales.

“It’s something I don’t really do too often anymore. But I just thought with the World Cup being at Headingley and Rashid Khan being around, ‘Right, this is a good chance for me to pick the brains of someone at the top of their game in international cricket and also around the world in T20’.

“I spoke to Andrew Gale when Yorkshire were training at Scarborough this week because he knows Phil Simmons (Afghanistan coach) through his Level Four training to see if he could put me in touch with Rashid.

“Mick Cadmore, our dressing room attendant, also helped me out by speaking to him in the changing room.

“So when I came in, Rashid came over and introduced himself. It was an invaluable hour bowling with him and chatting to him.

“I’ve been really lucky in my career so far. I’ve been able to pick the brains of people like Shane Warne, Stuart MacGill, Imran Tahir and Samuel Badree. With Rashid, we just talked about everything.

“Just watching Rashid on TV, I know he’s got a really good googly. I bowl the googly as well, so I was seeing if there were any little things I could pick up on.

“With most things in cricket, leg-spin in particular, everyone is quite unique, so you’re never going to walk away saying, ‘I’m going to bowl exactly like him’. It’s just about getting little nuggets and adapting them to my game.

“He was just amazing. He was so open with his information, and he’s such a nice guy.”

Rashid is ranked by the ICC as the world’s best T20 bowler, the second-best in ODI cricket and the world’s best ODI all-rounder. His rise to stardom from a relative unknown has been remarkable.

The man himself admitted: “It happened quite quickly, so much that it didn’t really give me time to think. I’ve been in all the (T20) leagues and had all different experiences with various players in all conditions. That has improved my game.

“If I was not playing in the other leagues and just playing for Afghanistan, I wouldn’t have the experience against the big players and big teams to control my nerves and deliver for the team.

“That has totally changed my game and my body language. It is a dream.”

Poysden, meanwhile, has been encouraged by his first full season at Headingley, although understandably frustrated by his recent lack of first-team opportunities in Championship cricket.

Left-arm spinner James Logan played against his former county Warwickshire at York last week, while the hierarchy have opted to sign both Dom Bess and Keshav Maharaj either side of that game.

Poysden was a regular fixture in the early-season RL50 (Royal London One-Day Cup) campaign, taking six wickets from eight matches. In second-team cricket, he has taken 20 wickets in eight matches across all forms.

“I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t frustrating to not have got more opportunities in the Championship with the club signing Bessy and then Maharaj. But that’s out of my control,” he added.

“For me, it’s about sticking in those performances whenever I get the chance to bowl. My numbers in the second team would reflect that I’ve been bowling well.

“We’ve got two or three weeks until T20 starts. Hopefully I’ll be involved in that. I’m just working as hard as I can to be ready."