Yorkshire County Cricket Club’s captain Gary Ballance has come a long way in between our interviews that have bookended his Yorkshire career. I first met ‘Gaz’ as a shy teenager breaking into the first-team squad, who eyed my recording device suspiciously and spoke as bluntly as he was to end up treating the bowling from Harare to Headingley. Thousands of… Read more →
In the aftermath of the hypnotic conclusion to Yorkshire County Cricket Club’s County Championship liftoff against Hampshire, the Friday heroics of Ben Coad felt like another lifetime. The message from Director of Cricket Martyn Moxon and Head Coach Andrew Gale has been for the young pretenders to push harder for a first-team shirt. Cue a gilt-edged chance because of whatever the… Read more →
Yorkshire County Cricket Club’s overseas player Peter Handscomb is admirably chipper given he got off a plane from Australia the previous evening. He smiles and blinks into the Headingley sunshine before we shake hands and get down to business. The 25-year-old had a blistering start to his Test career by racking up seven consecutive scores over fifty and it’s that consistency Yorkshire… Read more →
Geoffrey Boycott begins our interview with an apology. I suspect, like a well-paced innings, timing his numerous commitments is crucial but the phone line has been momentarily engaged by someone else: “Sorry…I couldn’t ger im’ off…” The ex-Yorkshire and England batsmen, now firmly established as outspoken commentator on BBC Test Match Special, has agreed to offer his tuppence-worth on Yorkshire… Read more →
Before my debut appearance at a Yorkshire County Cricket Club AGM, there were more pressing concerns at hand as a fine mizzle descended: where can you get a decent cooked breakfast around Headingley before 9am? Tripadvisor led to Caffe Latte on Otley Road (superb) and appreciable calm on my own, sprawled out on a leather sofa tweeting merrily away and… Read more →
I catch Yorkshire County Cricket Club batsman Jack Leaning by phone one afternoon for a natter about winter training and he launches into the meticulous, finessed programme tailored for each player.
At this time of year, downtime centres around taking it easy and boxsetting it up given the likely punishing summer schedule for the twenty-three year-old who is hoping to feature in all three formats in 2017.
We don’t tend to give much thought to county cricket professionals when they’re out of sight, fine-tuning in the nets over Christmas, but that is where much of the mileage in the legs is established and topped up.
Pictures typically emerge on social media of the Yorkshire CCC squad pushing weights across the floor like a version of the Nineties TV hit Gladiators (did anyone get that reference?)
This year, they trained with the Yorkshire Regiment for a fresh perspective on fitness and teamwork.
Somewhat mischeviously, I quiz Jack about Australian international batsman Peter Handscomb who is coming to Headingley – and whether the signing is welcomed or a private frustration – but he bats that back with the full face of the blade.
We get round to discussing him making the North squad, captained by Keaton Jennings and including Tim Bresnan, to play the South squad out in Abu Dhabi as a vehicle to press Leaning’s England aspirations; reward for limited overs form in 2016.
LISTEN TO THE FULL JACK LEANING INTERVIEW BELOW
Jack Leaning live (well, he was at the time) and uncut…can’t say fairer than that.
Due to the five-minute limit on audio clips for Audioboom, his views on the strength of ECB Yorkshire League North and life at York Cricket Club missed the cut but ‘strong’ and ‘loving it’ pretty much sums that up!