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LV= Breakthrough Player shortlist named

The shortlist to be crowned this season’s LV= Breakthrough Player has been reduced to five young players.

Zafar Ansari (Surrey), Alex Lees (Yorkshire), Lewis Gregory (Somerset), Jason Roy (Surrey) and Adam Riley (Kent) have been nominated by an expert panel, including former England skipper Mike Gatting, for their performances in the four-day game.

The winner will be decided by the public who can vote for the player they feel is deserving of the award at: http://www.lv.com/about-us/sponsorship/lv-cc/breakthrough-player.

David Parsons, England and Wales Cricket Board performance director, said: “These five guys have been hugely impressive in the LV= County Championship this season - there have been centuries, five-wicket hauls and match-winning performances across the board.

“It’s really important that we have strength all the way through the cricketing setup in England and Wales, and these players represent the next generation of potential internationals.”

Alex Lees will look to become the second Yorkshireman to be named LV= Breakthrough Player after Joe  Root won the award two years ago

Parsons joined Gatting and Players’ Cricket Association chairman Mark Wallace in reducing a long-list of 10 players, which was announced last month, down to the final five.

Surrey duo Ansari and Roy have helped the London county into the promotion places in Division Two with both having scored more than 700 runs this season while Ansari has also grabbed 21 wickets.

Riley is the leading English spinner in terms of wickets in the four-day game, having claimed 33 at an average of 28.66, while quick Gregory has 37 scalps at 24.13 in the top division.

Lees has hit 693 runs at 43.94, including two centuries, to help Yorkshire in their bid to win the Division One title.

“We’re really proud to be recognising young cricketing talent in the third year of our Breakthrough Player award,” LV= head of sponsorship Claire Jeromson said.

“The players on this year’s shortlist have all got a bright future ahead of them, and it’s great to be able to recognise and reward up and coming talent in the game.”

England batsman Joe Root won the inaugural LV= Breakthrough Player award two seasons ago with Surrey’s Rory Burns claiming the honour last year. 

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