Cracking Season of Yorkshire Cricket

YORKSHIRE comfortably clinched their second consecutive Championship title for the first time since 1968 after an extremely dominant season.

Despite England star Joe Root not playing a single Championship match and up to six of his players being away on International duty at one time or another, Jason Gillespie led his team superbly once again to seal the trophy with two full matches still to play.

The title has looked assured for Yorkshire ever since they dramatically came from behind against fellow challengers Durham in early August. With the teams all but level after the first innings, Durham at one point led 79-5 and Yorkshire looked likely to slide to their first loss of the season. However, Australian all-star Glenn Maxwell (140) and England spinner Adil Rashid (127) set the Scarborough crowd alight with a dazzling 248-run partnership in less than 46 overs to put Yorkshire on top. Yorkshire eventually set Durham a target of 447 before the bowlers completed the turnaround for Yorkshire to ease to a 183-run win.

This display sent a clear message to the rest of the counties and after Yorkshire blew Middlesex away for a measly 106 at Lord’s the title was confirmed. Despite going on to lose the match, their only County Championship loss of the season, there was still plenty to celebrate. Yorkshire rounded off their season with a comfortable win over relegated Sussex, where Captain Andrew Gale was finally able to hold the trophy aloft in front of the Headingley faithful: an honour he was unable to fulfil at the end of last season because of disciplinary reasons.

In spite of another successful year in four-day cricket, Yorkshire once again struggled in the shorter formats. They finished second from bottom in the North Group of the NatWest T20 Blast and were knocked out by eventual winners Gloucestershire in the Royal London One-Day Cup. However, with the exceptional signing of England all-rounder David Willey from Northamptonshire for next season, it is very hard for any Yorkshire fan not to believe that a double is just around the corner.

Matthew Norman

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