By Graham Hardcastle
In terms of County Championship cricket, certainly, Jack Leaning has been there, done it and bought the t-shirt. Now, having signed for Kent, he is aiming to raid the wardrobe again.
Leaning has signed a three-year contract to swap Emerald Headingley for the Spitfire St Lawrence Ground, Canterbury, this winter.
Aged 25, the batsman who bowls handy off-spinners is a two-time Specsavers Division One winner in 2014 and 2015 and could yet win a third title if something special happens for the White Rose over the next month.
Leaning is a former England Under-19 who hasn’t always been a regular fixture for Yorkshire in any format recently, but has put in a number of special performances, particularly during the title-winning years.
In 2014, his breakthrough year, he scored 465 Championship runs in 10 appearances before adding 922 from 15 matches the following year, including three hundreds. He was named Yorkshire’s young player of the year and earned a similar honour from the Cricket Writers’ Club.
“Looking back, the easiest two years of my career have been the first two,” he said.
“That’s a bit strange for a young lad coming into a professional environment, but it’s so easy to play without fear because you play on pure adrenaline. You have no preconceived ideas and can go out there and enjoy yourself.
“It gets tougher from then because teams work you out and you adapt your game slightly.