Richard Michael Pyrah
- Date of birth: November 1, 1982, Dewsbury, Yorkshire
- Role: Bowling Coach
- Nickname: Rich
- County Cap: 22nd August 2010
- County Debut: 2001
- First Class: Glamorgan v Yorkshire at Colwyn Bay, Aug 24-27, 2004
For so long an incredibly valuable asset to Yorkshire in the coloured clothing, former all-rounder Pyrah used the summer of 2011 to show that he could be just that in County Championship cricket as well.
Pyrah, who moved into coaching immediately upon retirement at the end of 2015, debuted as a player in List A cricket for the Yorkshire Cricket Board in 2001.
He spent his first year in coaching in 2016 experiencing many aspects of that side of the game.
He travelled to Australia in January to spend time with Jason Gillespie’s Adelaide Strikers, for example, as well as Victoria Bushrangers.
During late July and August 2016, he was also the head coach of the Yorkshire Diamonds women’s side during the first year of the Kia Super League T20 competition.
Pyrah is the proud owner of three first-class hundreds, including a stunning Roses ton at Headingley to nearly snatch victory from the jaws of defeat in 2011, and he also has one five-wicket haul under his belt in the longer format.
He has two County Championship medals to his name having played his part in 2014 and 2015 without being a regular selection.
Born in Dewsbury and schooled in Ossett, he is the holder of Yorkshire’s third best bowling figures in Twenty20 cricket having taken 5-16 against Durham at Scarborough in 2011. At the time, he was the first Yorkshire player to take five wickets in an innings, but since then six others have done so, including Tim Bresnan claiming a six-for.
Added to his qualities with the bat and ball, he was also an exceptional fielder to boot and a player completely committed to the cause.
After breaking his left hand in the opening week of the 2012 season in a fielding accident, he came out to bat in a plaster cast in an attempt to help avoid the follow-on against Kent.
Pyrah made his first-team debut in a 45-over match against Leicestershire at Grace Road in August 2004 before scoring a crucial first-innings 78 from the middle order to help set up a County Championship win against Worcestershire at New Road as the Tykes gained promotion back to the top tier the following summer.
In 2010, Pyrah claimed 41 wickets in both forms of limited overs cricket, including 21 in the Twenty20 competition as he became a valuable go to man for captain Andrew Gale through the middle overs of an innings. Awarded his county cap in August.
Pyrah played in eleven Championship matches in 2011, more than in any other season during his career, and he took his first five-wicket haul in that competition as well as scoring his first hundred against Lancashire in July, a magnificent 117 to recover his side from 45-8 in the first innings.
It came on the 30th anniversary of a similar knock from Sir Ian Botham in the famous 1981 Headingley Ashes Test.
He took 29 wickets and scored 376 runs in the Championship and also claimed Yorkshire’s first five-wicket haul in Twenty20 cricket.
Despite becoming a father to twin daughters in 2012, his summer was disrupted by broken hands at either end of the campaign and missed the Champions League T20 in South Africa.
He returned and impressed with the ball in limited overs cricket in 2013, taking wickets and limiting the run-rate.
Pyrah will forever remember taking the catch that won the Championship against Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge in September 2014, although he was only on the field as 12th man.
James Taylor caught Pyrah (at backward point) bowled Sidebottom.
His most significant contribution of the season, however, came against Warwickshire at Edgbaston when, having taken 3-37 with the ball, he shared a crucial century stand with Aaron Finch to take the game away from the hosts. He scored a fine 62.
Pyrah was also announced as Yorkshire beneficiary for the 2015 season, his last in the game.
After winning a second Championship title, he spent part of the following winter completing his ECB level four coaching badge.
He has helped develop some of the county’s current young seamers – Ben Coad, for example – in his role as the club’s lead bowling coach.
In 2020, he will be the county’s lead coach for their Royal London one-day Cup campaign with first-team coach Andrew Gale away as an assistant to Darren Lehmann with the Hundred team, the Northern Superchargers.