JACK BROOKS insists that he has a point to prove.
The pace bowler had an injury-hit 2017, taking 23 wickets in eight County Championship games as he struggled for regular cricket and rhythm.
But with a good pre-season behind him – “one of the better winters I’ve had since I’ve been at Yorkshire” – he is hopeful of having the same impact that saw him take 60 wickets or more in each of the three years prior to last summer.
“I had three really good years in a row, but last year was interrupted so I’ve got a point to prove and I like to think I’m at my best when I’ve got a point to prove,” he said.
“I feel the same as I did a few years ago – just a little bit older – and I’m really excited about the new season.
“Up until the last month of last season, I was pretty unhappy and frustrated with how it went really, because I was playing catch-up from the start after being injured; I missed the first five or six weeks of Champo cricket.
“From then on, I was playing catch-up and couldn’t get the rhythm and overs under my belt to make me feel like I was at the top of my game, but, by the end of the summer, I felt pretty much at the top of my game again and finished the season quite well.”
I had three really good years in a row, but last year was interrupted so I’ve got a point to prove and I like to think I’m at my best when I’ve got a point to proveJack Brooks
Brooks, 33, injects an X-factor into an attack boosted by the emergence of several youngsters. He welcomes that competition for places and says: “I can see what Ryan Sidebottom used to mean when he said that the young lads used to keep him young,” said Brooks.
“We’ve got a lot of hungry youngsters in our squad, and it was very inspiring to see Coady (Ben Coad) come in and do so well last year. I don’t envy the coaches and captain when it comes to selection, and it’s good to have that competition.
“If we can get runs on the board, we’ve certainly got the bowlers to go and win games.”
Reflecting on last season overall, Brooks added: “It was disappointing, but we had some home truths afterwards and have worked hard to change things during the winter.
“It basically came down to us not performing as we had done in the last few years, but we’ve got more focus now and can’t wait to get started.”