Daniel Vettori has received official clearance from New Zealand Cricket to join Warwickshire as an overseas player for the 2006 season.

Vettori, the left-arm orthodox spin bowler, will join the club on May 21 and will remain available for the remainder of the season.

No limits have been placed on his bowling workload, but Warwick-shire are sensitive to the needs of New Zealand Cricket (NZC) and will rest the player if and when the opportunity arises.

Vettori, who has been captaining his country in one-day cricket in the absence of Stephen Fleming, has previously been a target of Warwickshire but the parties were unable to agree terms.

Still aged only 26, he has captured 208 Test wickets at an average of 34.86 and is a good enough batsman to have scored two Test centuries (average 23.88). At county level, he should prove a highly effective performer.

He is likely to miss the opening four Champion-ship matches and the first four or five Cheltenham & Gloucester Trophy games, but should make his first-class debut for the club at Lord's on May 24, His oneday bow should be at Headingley three days earlier.

Confirmation of Vettori's availability will be a relief to officials at Edgbaston. Although personal terms were agreed with the player before Christmas, a deal with Indian spinner Anil Kumble faltered at a similar stage a couple of years ago.

The relationship of the county's new coach, former New Zealand international Mark Greatbatch, with NZC will have done no harm at all.

Bearing in mind the club's wretched luck with imports (Shane Bond, Damien Fleming, Michael Clark, Corey Collymore and Collins Obuya spring to mind), however, many Warwickshire eyes will be on Vettori coming through New Zealand's tour of South Africa which ends on May 9.