Gale and showers in Yorkshire

Posted in Domestic Cricket

It is not surprising that the Yorkshire team are struggling with the current chill. Afterall, they have just got back from Barbados.

"How was the holiday?" I asked Andrew Gale at Tuesday's media day which due to the inclemental weather took place inside the indoor school at Headingley.

"Sorry, I meant the tour."

The new Yorkshire skipper laughed it off before launching into why it had been a good trip.

"We took a lot out of it," he said. "We played outside and got some good practice in. It was just what we needed."

Gale is the sixth Yorkshire captain in ten years and the amiable 26 year old knows he has a big job on his hands if he is to bring success to the White Rose county who have dodged relegation in the previous two years.

Azeem Rafiq, Ajmal Shahzad, Michael Vaughan, Andrew Gale & Jonathan Bairstow

Michael Vaughan might have hung up his batting gloves but he will be available to Andrew Gale if the new Yorkshire skipper ever needs some help

Gone are the famous names of the past - Gough, Vaughan, Hoggard and White - and replaced by a younger troupe including England Under-19 captain Azeem Rafiq and high-rated stumper Jonathan Bairstow, son of the late David.

"Some people are writing us off already - a few of the local press, some members," said Gale. "But I think I can be successful as captain. We have a young side here and 11 of the players were with England teams this winter.

"Being captain of the England Lions in the UAE in February was a great experience and I hope that will help me."

Gale will also have the added bonus of Vaughan - a consultant to Yorkshire - being on the end of the phone should he need the odd pointer.

"I can't believe we start next week though," added Gale as he considered his team's championship opener with Warwickshire.

I wished Gale good luck and told him to enjoy batting on those damp green tops to which the left-hander, walking towards his next interview, mimed a play and miss to a ball which rose steeply and left him.

The traditional county press day - Somerset were first last week - is a pretty regimented affair which starts with team photos in the white and one-day kit. At Yorkshire the sponsors had a photo, as did the mascots, then there was a photo where the players ate bags of crisps, then one jokey picture...

"I've never seen so many photos," said David Wainwright, the Yorkshire and England Lions left-arm spinner who hopes to form a successful spin partnership with Adil Rashid this summer.

Once the team photos finished, the players then had head and shoulder shots in each kit before doing any media requests.

Tim Bresnan, still tinted from toiling away in the Bangladesh sun, was in demand with the various TV crews, which included Sky Sports News, and the numerous journalists led by Daily Mail cricket reporter Paul Newman.

Bresnan was something of a surprise package during the recent Test series. Branded the best seamer on tour by Andy Flower, Bresnan also scored 91 in the second Test in Dhaka before being stumped as he eyed a maiden century.

Tim Bresnan

Although better known as a bowler, Tim Bresnan impressed with the bat during England's recent tour to Bangladesh where he scored 91 in Dhaka

"I don't regret it - it's only nine runs," he shrugged, very matter-of-factly.

The solidly-built all-rounder, who wore Ajmal Shahzad's county one-day shirt as he churned through interview after interview, is unlikely to play a full part in Yorkshire's season due to England commitments.

The first - if selected, of course - is the World Twenty20 in West Indies at the end of April.

"England need to be more consistent," he insisted. "We can't just rely on our so-called big players. We all need to fire."

His Yorkshire team-mates would like a fire too, if only to keep warm.

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