2006 domestic review
The 2006 domestic season was one of the most entertaining in living memory with Sussex unquestionably taking the honours.
They had to wait until the last game of the season to clinch the Liverpool Victoria County Championship for the second time in four seasons, and victory over Lancashire in the C&G Trophy final gave them a deserved double.
The final championship promotion and relegation places were not decided until the final hours of the campaign, while Essex retained their NatWest Pro40 crown on the last day of their one-day summer.
Throw in a thrilling Twenty20 Cup final and it is easy to see why 2006 will be remembered for many years to come.
Steve Stubbings predicts even brighter times lie ahead following a season which saw Derbyshire make considerable progress in four-day cricket, improvements he puts down to a host of changes off the pitch.
Darren Gough could hardly have been happier with Essex's season, earning an England recall and using his experience to help the Eagles to a second NatWest Pro40 title in as many years.
For Alex Gidman, the 2006 campaign represented a coming of age as he led Gloucestershire to the NatWest Pro40 Second Division title in the absence of captain Jon Lewis.
Kent batsman Matthew Walker reflects on a season when he reaped the benefits of "knowing my game inside and out".
Lancashire may have missed out on the County Championship title and lost the C&G Trophy final, but captain Mark Chilton was more than happy with the efforts of his players.
Winning the Twenty20 Cup for the second time since its inception was the highlight of head coach Phil Whitticase's summer.
David Capel, who sparked a Northamptonshire revival after taking over as head coach from Kepler Wessels midway through the 2006 season, sets his sights on emulating Sussex's recent success.
Graeme Swann denies there was any hint of complacency in the Nottinghamshire ranks despite their startling fall from grace in 2006.
The performances of youngsters such as Sam Spurway give Somerset coach Andy Hurry much encouragement following a largely lacklustre season.
Alan Butcher's first full season in charge saw Surrey romp to the County Championship Second Division title on the back of Mark Ramprakash's brilliance. The former England batsman is hoping to impress on the dance floor this winter.
Captain Chris Adams is doubly delighted with Sussex's season, while coach Mark Robinson claims their success is having a knock-on effect at international level. Peter Moores, Robinson's predecessor, heaps praise on his former charges.
Director of cricket Steve Rhodes was all smiles after Worcestershire's promotion in the County Championship, while Zimabwean spinner Ray Price speaks of his enjoyment at having "the best job in the world".
Yorkshire director of cricket David Byas ponders life after Darren Lehmann, who bade a fond farewell to county cricket in 2006.
Player ins and outs
Check out all the transfer activity over the close season with our county-by-county guide to the comings and goings on the domestic circuit.
Roll of honour 2006
Liverpool Victoria County Championship Division One
Relegated: Middlesex, Nottinghamshire
Liverpool Victoria County Championship Division Two
Cheltenham & Gloucester Trophy
NatWest Pro40 Division One
Winners: Essex Eagles
Runners-up: Northamptonshire Steelbacks
Relegated: Middlesex Crusaders, Durham Dynamos, Glamorgan Dragons
NatWest Pro40 Division Two
Winners: Gloucestershire Gladiators
Promoted: Worcestershire Royals, Hampshire Hawks
Second XI County Championship: Kent
Second XI Trophy: Warwickshire
Minor Counties Championship: Devon
MCCA Knock-Out Trophy: Northumberland
U17 County Championship: Yorkshire
U15 County Championship: Essex
U15 County Cup: Surrey
U14 County Cup: Wales
U13 County Cup: Staffordshire
Over 50s County Championship: Yorkshire
Cockspur Cup: South Northumberland (Northumberland)
Portman Building Society U15 National Club Championship: Parley (Dorset)
MCC Spirit of Cricket U13 National Club Championship: Harrow St Mary's (Middlesex)
Indoor Six-a-side: BAT Sports (Hampshire)
Women's roll of honour 2006
Liverpool Victoria County Championship
Division One: Kent
Division Two: Nottinghamshire
Division Three: Surrey
Super 4s: Sapphires
County Challenge Cup: Warwickshire
U17 County League: Yorkshire
U15 County League: Kent
U13 County League: Kent
National Knock Out Cup: City of Leeds
Premier League: Reading Ridgeway
Premier League Twenty20: Invicta
Lady Taverners U15 Girls: Harold Wood (Essex)
Lady Taverners U13 Girls: Pannal (Yorkshire)
National Schools Indoor 8-a-side U15: Worcester Whirls (Worcestershire)
National Schools Indoor 8-a-side U13: The Mote (Kent)