Yorkshire claim 2014 County Championship title

Yorkshire claimed their first County Championship crown in 13 years, and only their second in 44 years, as they beat Nottinghamshire by an innings and 152 runs at Trent Bridge.

Nottinghamshire v Yorkshire - LV County Championship

Joe Root received the trophy

Their eigth victory of the season, the fifth by an innings margin, saw them go one better than their second place finish of 2013. The Tykes also claimed a win by nine wickets and two more by 220 runs or more. The team has won five of its last six games and four in succession to take the title with a game to spare.

The hero on the final day in Nottingham was the evergreen Ryan Sidebottom, who claimed the 26th five-wicket haul of an illustrious first-class career. It his fourth Championship crown - two for Yorkshire and two for Nottinghamshire. His four wickets for six runs in 7.2 overs allayed any fears of a Nottinghamshire resistance. He saw the back of nightwatchman Gary Keedy before accounting for Chris Read, Luke Fletcher and sealing the title when James Taylor flashed him to cover.

Adil Rashid had Jake Ball leg before in his only over of the final day, but by then a season where the White Rose County had been a class above its peers, had been won. Victory and scenes of Yorkshire celebrations were in full swing by 11.36am.

Sidebottom may have starred today, but the heroes through a triumphant season have been many. Jack Brooks has 64 Championship wickets to his name, Adam Lyth has amassed 1,428 Championship runs. The Lyth and Alex Lees opening partnership has averaged 76 for the opening wicket this summer. If I continued I’d be forced to list the entire squad - it’s been a real team effort.

The victory presentation was tarnished by the England & Wales Cricket Board’s rather mean spirited decision to ban Andrew Gale from taking the trophy. The Yorkshire skipper had been suspended from participating in the final two Championship outings of the summer. Most had assumed that this would not prevent the wholehearted leader from posing for the glory shots in his sixth season as captain. It was not to be as stand-in Joe Root was handed the prize.

That grated, but did not take the shine from a day where Yorkshire reclaimed the Holy Grail and their 32nd title of an illustrious history. The team had been told at the start of last summer to ‘write their own chapters’ of that history.

Jack Brooks

It has been some time bubbling up in director of cricket, Martyn Moxon’s, melting pot.

The prolific Academy has continued to provide the county with a steady stream of homegrown talent. The national side has benefited too, but the silverware in the offing for some time had yet to materialise. Now the wait is over, there is optimism that today’s success could be the start of another golden ere of Yorkshire cricket.

Jason Gillespie’s impact is not to be underestimated. The club saw promotion in his first season as 1st team coach, a title threatening second in 2013 and now the title has been landed. Gillespie’s Yorkshire has only been beaten three times during his tenure and the solitary defeat in 2014 came at Lord’s when a miraculous innings from Chris Rogers denied what seemed to be a certain win.

One word of caution. When the Championship was last won in 2001 the county were relegated the following year. With the strength-in-depth now at the club and a support staff of Moxon, Gillespie and Richard Dawson there seems a solidity that will not allow the same to happen again.

The Yorkies are made of sterner stuff this time around.

James Buttler

James has been working as a journalist and broadcaster in cricket since 2006 and was an avid fan for many years before that.
As the editor of World Cricket Badger he is intent on building the website to give quality coverage of the domestic game around the world.
He is also the presenter of the Cricket Badger Radio Show on Radio Yorkshire every Tuesday evening between 7-9pm UK time.
James was the full-time Media Manager at Yorkshire County Cricket Club between 2007 and 2010.
James is a published author, a writer/video contributor to many cricket publications and a complete cricket badger!

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