No overseas players for Yorks in 2011

Yorkshire are planning not to sign any overseas players, even for Twenty20 cricket, next season.

Despite the six-figure, three-year deal signed last month by car dealers JCT600 to become the club’s main official sponsor, director of cricket Martyn Moxon said: “Things are still going to be very tight through 2011, given that we lost money through staging the Australia v Pakistan Test.

“We have no Test in 2011 so it will be a challenging year financially and we will go with the staff we have for the whole season. We would reconsider only in the event of a spate of injuries or more international calls than we expect.”

Yorkshire were reported to be £18m in debt last season and have since balanced the loss of Jacques Rudolph with the signing of Ryan Sidebottom.

Moxon is hopeful his youth policy will continue to reap rewards after going close to winning the County Championship last summer, as well as reaching the semi-finals of the Clydesdale Bank 40 league.

While most of those not involved with the England squads have been back in training at Headingley since early November, four youngsters expected to push their first team claims are playing in the southern hemisphere.

Gary Ballance, who could be the leading contender for Rudolph’s batting place, is in his native Zimbabwe, while James Lee, Joe Root and Azeem Rafiq are in Australia.

Seam bowler Lee featured in the first team towards the end of the 2009 season, but did not appear this year and Moxon said: “He struggled a bit with his technique and didn’t bowl well enough.

“He has gone to Melbourne to get some overs under his belt and we have given him clear guidance on what he needs to do. He is pleased with the way things have gone so far and we hope he comes back the better for it because we want eight seamers capable of playing first team cricket.”

Moxon is happy for Adil Rashid to be spending the winter at Headingley after complaining in the past about his treatment by the England hierarchy.

“Once we knew he wasn’t going to be picked for the Ashes we discussed what was best for him,” he said. “We agreed this could be his last chance for a while to have a break and it would be wise to take it.”

After seeing the provisional fixture list for 2011, Moxon is again concerned about the inconvenience of having to fit a 40-over match in Holland into a tight schedule.

Last season Yorkshire had to travel by ferry, coming back overnight, and this time they are in Holland on a Sunday and have to be at Southampton two days later.

“It’s a logistical and financial challenge,” he said. “But I’ve spent a lot of time talking about the fixture programme and now we find it’s no different from last season. I just hope that by 2012 we get some sanity. The views of cricket people need to be listened to in a proper consultation process.”

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