Andrew Gale has been named as the surprise choice to replace Jason Gillespie as first-team coach at Yorkshire after calling time on his playing career.
Yorkshire announced the 32-year-old will take the reins from Gillespie after ending a 12-year playing career to take the position on an initial three-year contract.
Gale, captain at Yorkshire since 2009, takes over after Gillespie announced his decision to leave the club at the end of the 2016 campaign having narrowly missed out on a third consecutive County Championship title on the final day of the season.
The county considered 16 candidates for the position, while England assistant Paul Farbrace is believed to have turned down the opportunity of a return to his former club having worked at Headingley between 2012 and 2014.
Instead it will be Gale who assumes control alongside Martyn Moxon, who will continue his role as director of cricket, although the move is something of a risk with Gale’s only previous coaching experience coming at a company he runs outside of the game.
He admitted the move into coaching had come sooner than expected, despite averaging just 21 with the bat during the past four-day season.
“I didn’t expect the opportunity to come as early as it has, but it is too good to turn down,” he said in a statement.
“In taking up the role, I have ended a memorable playing career at Headingley, however, the challenge ahead of me is one that truly excites me.
“As first XI coach, I aim to continue the good work that has been done over the past five years with the excellent support staff that we have here.
“I cannot wait to roll my sleeves up and get stuck in.”
Moxon added: “We had 16 applicants for the job with some extremely good candidates in amongst that list. But at the end of the day, for what I believe we need, Galey was the obvious choice.”
The move brings an end to a career that saw Gale become the youngest captain in the club’s history, as well as scoring over 8,000 first-class runs including 20 centuries.
As well as claiming back-to-back titles in 2014 and 2015, he led the club to promotion under Gillespie along with two top-three finishes in the top flight of the County Championship.
Source : TalkSport