Sam Northeast not seen as a long-term option for Yorkshire CCC

YORKSHIRE have revealed that they are not looking to sign loanee Sam Northeast on a permanent basis as they want to develop their existing group of batsmen.

Sam Northeast of Yorkshire drives during day one of the LV= Insurance County Championship match between Northamptonshire and Yorkshire at The County Ground (Picture: Andy Kearns/Getty Images)
Sam Northeast of Yorkshire drives during day one of the LV= Insurance County Championship match between Northamptonshire and Yorkshire at The County Ground (Picture: Andy Kearns/Getty Images)

Six counties are said to be interested in Northeast, who Yorkshire signed for three games to cover for various injuries and international call-ups.

Northeast, 31, left Hampshire last week and is a free agent once his loan deal expires.

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Martyn Moxon, the Yorkshire director of cricket, said: “Sam came just to help us out with a little bit of a slight crisis that we’ve got with England calls and obviously injuries to Will Fraine and Tom Kohler-Cadmore, so there’s no intention, as it were, of making it permanent.

“To be honest, there’s the financial side of things to consider and, with the staff that we’ve got, where would he kind of fit in, I suppose, looking forward.

“We haven’t seen a lot of Dawid Malan, but with Dawid, Gary Ballance, when they’re playing... to have Sam as well probably doesn’t really fit. It’s purely a short-term loan to cover for a period where we’ve got a couple of difficulties.

“We’re delighted to have him, but we’ve got a number of younger players who we want to see come through and challenge for places.”

Had it not been for a recent lack of runs and/or red-ball exposure, Yorkshire might have opted to field one of those youngsters instead of signing Northeast, whose status as a non-England player will make him more attractive to suitors.

The likes of James Wharton and Matthew Revis are highly regarded by the Yorkshire coaching staff, who must nevertheless strike that difficult balance between trying to win in the present while simultaneously developing for the future.

Indeed, had Yorkshire lost their County Championship match against close rivals Northamptonshire earlier this week at Wantage Road, where Northeast debuted, and, as it turned out, ironically failed twice, Yorkshire could have found themselves missing out on a place in the new Division One, especially with a difficult final group game to come against Lancashire at Emerald Headingley, starting on Sunday.

However, a hard-fought 53-run win not only knocked Northamptonshire out of the running for the top flight, but also Glamorgan’s subsequent failure to beat Sussex at Hove means that both Yorkshire and Lancashire have now qualified for Division One, giving them a crack at winning the title outright.

“With regards to the batting, we have got some younger players, James Wharton and Matthew Revis in particular, who we’re hoping will be able to do well for us going forward,” said Moxon.

“But they’ve not had a lot of red-ball recently due to the T20, while the second XI game this week was cancelled because of Covid among the Leicester players, so they haven’t had that red-ball cricket recently to show us really what form they are in.

“We did have a game at Weetwood last week, where Revis got a decent half-century in the first innings, but Wharton didn’t get any runs, Jonny Tattersall didn’t get any runs, and that’s why we went for Northeast because nobody had really nailed it, if you like, in the second team of late.”

There has been growing speculation that Malan, who is currently on England white-ball duty, could be recalled to the Test XI for the series against India starting next month after some impressive displays in red-ball for Yorkshire.

That would also leave the club short in top-order batting but the expectation is that Kohler-Cadmore and Fraine will be fit by then, although they are still to recover from a broken finger and side strain respectively.

“They’re still some way off being fit,” added Moxon.

“Tom’s fracture is kind of a splintered fracture, so we’ve got to be very careful it all knits together.

“It’s not a clean break, as such, so that’s going to take time.

“He’s not going to play for us before The Hundred, that’s for sure, and whether he’ll be fit for the start of The Hundred (the men’s competition begins on July 22) remains to be seen.

“Frainey’s still sore, his side is still sore, so he’s not started hitting any balls yet. Again, we’re waiting to see whether he’ll be fit for the start of the 50-over competition (which also begins on July 22).”

Northeast will play in Friday’s T20 Blast game against Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge, where victory would send Yorkshire into the quarter-finals. His final appearance will be in the Roses four-dayer.

Mark Stoneman, another loan capture, who is briefly back with parent club Surrey for Championship cricket, will play in Yorkshire’s last two T20 group games at Lancashire on July 17 and at Derbyshire the following day.

The Derbyshire match takes place on the same day as the T20 international between England and Pakistan at Headingley, which Yorkshire have confirmed will now be played in front of a capacity crowd.

The fixture is part of the government’s Events Research Programme, and spectators must demonstrate their Covid-19 status by using the NHS Covid Pass.