Gloucestershire captain Alex Gidman has been awarded a benefit year by the club in 2012.
A product of Painswick CC, Wycliffe College in Stonehouse and Hatherley and Reddings CC, Gidman made his Gloucestershire debut in 2002 and has been skipper for the past two seasons
He said: “It is an incredible honour to represent Gloucestershire, to pull on the shirt and follow in the line of some of the world’s greatest ever cricketers by playing for the county.
“So to be awarded a benefit year is a tremendously humbling experience, but one I am looking forward to very much. It’s a great honour and I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has helped me achieve what I have in the game.”
“I am desperate for Gloucestershire to achieve as much as they can and I am already setting my sights on a great season next year. To have the chance to take Gloucestershire to the next level alongside my benefit is something I will relish.”
Gidman, 30, has scored more than 8,000 first class runs, including 16 centuries and five more in one-day cricket.
Fast-tracked into the England Academy system by then coach Rod Marsh to captain the England A tour of Malaysia and India in 2003-04, Gidman had to withdraw because of a finger injury.
He helped Gloucestershire to win the C&G Trophy Final at Lord’s in 2003 and 2004 and has continued to score freely with some crucial innings.
Gloucestershire’s chief executive Tom Richardson, said: “Alex has been a very loyal, very committed and very successful player for Gloucestershire for ten years so it was easy to reward him with a benefit year in 2012.
“He has led from the front and is taking a group of very young, inexperienced but talented players to the next level and I hope the county supporters will really get behind his benefit year. It is very well deserved.”
Gidman added: “There will be some great events planned for next year and hopefully a few things that are a little bit different.
“It is as much about me saying thank you to the supporters who have been so loyal over the years, so I hope there will be a few laughs, some great nights and lots of fun.”