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County Cricket

Steven Patterson appointed Yorkshire captain, signs new two-year deal

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Steven Patterson will replace Gary Ballance as Yorkshire captain for the remainder of the season, the county confirmed on Saturday, June 16.

The 34-year-old also signed a new two-year deal with the county, and said: “Knowing I’ll finish my career at the club is something I’m proud of.”

“It’s a proud honour and a privilege to be asked to do the job,” Patterson told yorkshireccc.com. “I think Gary has done a fantastic job over the last year or two, but I think giving him the freedom to just go out there and concentrate on his cricket hopefully means we can get the best out of him as a batsman. We know he’s one of the best in the country when he does that.”

Ballance was Yorkshire’s regular captain, but took an indefinite break from the game on May 18, citing “personal reasons”. He returned for the One-Day Cup clash against Leicestershire on May 27, but Patterson remained captain.

Ballance has slowly improved his form as well since then, scoring consecutive half-centuries in Yorkshire’s outings against Northants and Essex, scoring a 91 against the latter.

Ballance said it was a “big decision” to step aside but thought “it was best to let that go”.

“Hopefully, for me personally, I can go on and play some nice cricket and not worry too much about the captaincy,” he said. “I don’t think it was really affecting my batting too much, it just felt like there was quite a lot of burden, in terms of pressure and expectation, on me and it has got a lot tougher over the last few weeks.

“Patto (Steven Patterson) has been really good over the last few weeks, he’s done a great job and seems to be enjoying it. So I just think it’s the right thing to do going forwards. I’m always happy to help out in any way, whether it be Patto with the captaincy or the young lads needing advice

“We’ve got plenty of senior players in the group so there’s a lot of good cricket brains going around.”

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