Yorkshire cult hero Jack Brooks has ended his six-year spell with the county by claiming the Professional Cricketers’ Association’s Player of the Month for September after guiding his side to survival in the Specsavers County Championship.
The ‘Headband Warrior’ announced at the end of August he would be departing Headingley for Somerset and has since gone on to produce his best form of the season in an emotional final month with the white rose county.
The seam bowler received 43.4% of the public vote from supporters on a poll conducted on the PCA and Sky Sports online platforms. Fellow seamer Jamie Porter came in second place with 28.4% of the vote with Brooks’ teammate Gary Ballance in third with 16.9% with Kyle Abbott receiving 11.3% of the vote.
The shortlist was produced via the PCA Most Valuable Player Rankings according to domestic cricket in the month of September.
Taking 21 wickets across the month, including two five-wicket hauls, he gave the Yorkshire faithful another reminder why he was such a key-part to their success over recent years.
“I’m really pleased to have won this and it’s nice for the fans to be engaged and choose me,” said Brooks.
“I’m very appreciative of them to vote for me and there were some strong contenders alongside me this month. The main reason I have won this is down to my teammates and my determination to leave Yorkshire on a high.
“It was nice to have Patto (Steven Patterson), Coady (Ben Coad) and Bres (Tim Bresnan) alongside me in the bowling attack who have got the best out of me so I couldn’t have done it without the other lads in that team.”
Arguably Brooks’ finest performance of the season came against Lancashire in the Roses fixture where he claimed the MVP for the match by taking nine wickets in a victory that went a long way to ensuring safety.
The 34-year-old has also admitted the big games get the best out of him after an up and down summer.
“I always like to think I rise to the bigger games and the Yorkshire Vs Lancashire are the big ones you always want to play in. They get a lot more attention and with the league table it was even bigger, I really enjoyed getting stuck in and I hadn’t had an amazing season up until then.
“There was a lot going on behind the scenes and my mind was a bit clouded but once I made my decision it felt like I had a weight off my shoulders and I could go out and perform and luckily I managed to do that.
“I am absolutely knackered now, both mentality and physically. I am glad the season is over but I am just glad I could finish on a positive note.
“It has been an emotional couple of weeks and I had managed to keep a lid on it until I gave a thank you and goodbye speech to the lads at Worcester. I broke down half way through my speech!
“My time here has meant a lot to me. I have a lot of good friends which, ultimately, is what it comes down to. I’ve created some long lasting memories but I am now really excited for the new challenge and out of respect for Yorkshire I have not been talking about Somerset too much in public because I had such a big job to do for Yorkshire.
“It is sad to be leaving but it is time to move on. Equally now I have to respect Somerset in the same way and look forward to enjoying some success down there.