New captain Shan Masood has been a busy man over the last few weeks, trying to give himself the best possible chance to hit the ground running with Yorkshire.

Masood has been on international duty with Pakistan for a month-long series of limited overs games against New Zealand. 

But, around those matches, he has been trawling through highlights, scorecards and statistics relating to his new county’s early-season performances.

“I’m a cricket geek,” said the left-handed batter, who is debuting in the ongoing LV= Insurance County Championship clash with Durham at the Seat Unique Riverside, which heads into its second day today. 

“I’ve had the NVPlay on, and I’m watching and following to see how our side has been doing in various games. I’m also seeing other opposition, following my old county (Derbyshire) as well.

“I love watching the game, following it and knowing about how people are doing.

“I’m here trying to apply what I’ve watched and help give any info that I possibly can as an outsider coming in.

“Results haven’t gone our way, but there have been things beyond our control like the weather.

“We could have easily won at Sussex. Glamorgan, if we had grabbed our chances in the first innings that mammoth effort of 400 in the second innings could have been a winning score. 

“It’s small margins, and it takes one innings and one match for a side to kick on, and I’m hoping it will be this match. 

“If, god forbid, it’s not this match, I’m sure it will be the next match. 

“We’re all optimistic, and I come in with optimism that we’re going to have a great season.”

Masood has spoken of his pride at joining Yorkshire on a two-year deal. 

“It’s a massive opportunity when you look at the stature of the club,” he said. 

“From a Pakistan perspective, we’ve had three Pakistan captains play for the club in Sarfaraz Ahmed, Inzamam and Younus Khan. 

“The great Sachin Tendulkar has played for this club, and my current favourite Harry Brook plays for this club. Joe Root as well. I can name players all day. 

“To play at a ground like Headingley, it’s going to be amazing. 

“We’re really relishing this opportunity, myself and my family. 

“At the end of the day, when you play cricket, these are the kind of things you want in your life. You want to play for the best teams, and you want to take on challenges. 

“I’ve always taken on a challenge. This is one where we can come out on the right side of it and being a really good cricket team going forwards.”

Masood’s ongoing availability for Yorkshire this season could yet be further affected. There is, for example, a two-match Test series between Sri Lanka and Pakistan pencilled in for July.

“That’s not in my hands,” he said. “It could be anyone in our dressing room who gets called up for the Lions or the senior England team. We have enough quality for that to happen.

“The thing is whilst you’re here, you have to make a difference.

“Whatever game I play, I want to make a contribution with the bat. 

“As a team, I want us to churn out big runs and wickets and put in some big impactful performances.”

Masood referenced earlier his admiration for Yorkshire and England star Harry Brook, who is currently at the Indian Premier League with Sunrisers Hyderabad. 

And he added: “I’ve played a lot of cricket against him and shared good conversations with him and laughs. We’ve always kept in touch.

“I’m really excited to share whatever little time we have with him, Joe Root, Adil Rashid and obviously Jonny and Dawid are with us at the moment. 

“Whatever time they can give to us, it will be immense. Sharing the dressing room with them will be a huge thing for us all.”

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