Decision day over Geoffrey Boycott arrives for Yorkshire CCC’s members

Geoffrey Boycott
Geoffrey Boycott
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GEOFFREY BOYCOTT will on Saturday discover whether he has been successful in his controversial attempt to join the Yorkshire board.

The former Yorkshire and England opening batsman is standing against the club’s wishes and will learn his fate at the club’s annual general meeting at Headingley (10am start).

Geoffrey Boycott,  pictured with former Yorkshire CCC chairman, Colin Graves.

Geoffrey Boycott, pictured with former Yorkshire CCC chairman, Colin Graves.

Boycott’s candidacy has been strongly opposed by the Headingley hierarchy, with Yorkshire chairman Steve Denison warning members ahead of the meeting that it would be “destabilising” and “not in the best interests of the club” to vote for Boycott amid fears that he might interfere with the cricket.

Yorkshire have won back-to-back County Championships for the first time since Boycott was a player, but the 75-year-old has insisted that he has no intention of getting involved in the cricket and wants merely to stand up for members’ interests amid his own fears that £20m-plus debts are “killing the club”.

Since the start of the month, members have been voting in a postal ballot, the result of which will be announced today.

Members have instead been asked to support the board’s recommendations that club chief executive Mark Arthur is elected to the board along with Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Sir Gary Verity, as well as current director Robin Smith, who retires by rotation.

Boycott’s candidacy has also been strongly opposed by the Yorkshire members’ committee, which represents the interests of the club’s circa 4,500 members.

However, Boycott gained the necessary 30 nominations from members to stand for election in the first place and is still revered by many as one of the game’s greatest players.

The board are also recommending that former Yorkshire and England batsman John Hampshire is appointed club president in succession to Dickie Bird, who stands down after a two-year stint.

Hampshire scored more than 35,000 runs in all cricket before becoming a respected umpire.

Denison believes Hampshire, 75, is the perfect choice to succeed Bird.

“John’s absolutely ideal to pick up where Dickie left off in terms of personality, although I’m sure he would argue that he had a better playing career than Dickie,” joked Denison.

“The members love him as well.

“John’s desire is to get to as many games as he can, attend as many functions and be the ambassador that Dickie was for the club,” added Denison, who described Bird as Yorkshire’s “best ever” president.