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Yorkshire's Root named cricketer of the year

Yorkshire's Joe Root has tonight been named England's player of the year.

Yorkshire's Joe Root scored more than 1,100 runs at an average of almost 95 Credit: Press Association

The Sheffield born batsman, who last week was named the Test vice captain, took the award ahead of James Anderson, Moeen Ali and Yorkshire team mate Gary Ballance after 12 months in which he scored more than 1,100 runs at an average of almost 95.

It's a nice thing to achieve, and I hope it's the start of what could be another good year. It would have been good, a lot nicer, to win it in a year where we have done really well. I think, even though the results haven't gone well, there have been a lot of really good individual performances through the whole team. I hope we can put those all together now.

– Joe Root

Private jet for Yorkshire trio to return for county tie

County champions Yorkshire have chartered a private jet to fly three of their players back to Headingley after international duty in order to boost their depleted squad.

The trio will return to Headingley for the Hampshire game on Sunday Credit: Press Association

The Tykes have done without six front-line players so far this season owing to Gary Ballance, Jonny Bairstow, Adam Lyth, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid and Joe Root being with England's Test side in the West Indies.

Ballance and Root were the only ones to play a minute of the three-match series and are being rested by England this weekend, but Bairstow, Rashid and Tim Bresnan are in line to face Ireland in a one-day international in Dublin on Friday.

With Lyth and Plunkett back in their ranks, Yorkshire are keen to have as strong a side as possible to face Hampshire on Sunday and have arranged for their trio of players to travel separately to the rest of the England squad.

Hampshire's James Vince will also travel to Leeds with the group.

Yorkshire chief executive Mark Arthur said: "It is unprecedented times. We have had six players away for three Championship matches and then England come back from the Caribbean and have arranged a one-day game in Ireland where we have three of our players called up for this one-off game.

"If we would have stuck to the scheduled flights they would have returned to Birmingham on Saturday afternoon and in our opinion that is no way to prepare for a very important LV= County Championship (match) on Sunday at Headingley.

"Martyn Moxon (director of cricket), in particular, was very upset how long it would take these guys to get back. The timing is difficult for all parties concerned with this one-off match taking place in Ireland.

"We fully understand the difficulties the ECB face and they fully support this. They have made allowances for the lads to travel back separately."

Yorkshire lose key pair to injury

Yorkshire must get by without Aaron Finch "for up to 12 weeks", and Ryan Sidebottom for six, after latest injury updates on the pair.

Destructive opener Finch has had surgery on his hamstring - and after a scan last week, the length of veteran left-arm seamer Sidebottom's absence has also been confirmed.

Australia can still expect Finch to be fit in time for their limited-overs series against England, beginning with a one-off Twenty20 at the end of August.

But his availability for Yorkshire is a different matter, and he seems certain to miss the vast majority of their NatWest T20 Blast campaign.

Yorkshire were hoping, even when Finch conceded he would have to sit out the remainder of the Indian Premier League after suffering the injury earlier this month, that he would be able to join them by the end of May.

Wednesday's statement from Cricket Australia (CA) has ended that prospect, and the likelihood is Finch will not be ready until the Blast knockout stages - should Yorkshire progress that far.

A CA press release explained Finch underwent surgery on his left leg in Melbourne on Tuesday.

Sidebottom hurt himself running between the wickets in Yorkshire's opening Division One match, which they won away to Worcestershire.

The 37-year-old former England bowler has a grade two tear to his left calf, and has already begun a rehabilitation programme.

It is a great shame for Ryan. We will monitor his rehabilitation on a daily basis and hope that he will return to cricket in six weeks.

– Yorkshire physiotherapist Kunwar Bansil

Yorkshire had to begin the defence of their county crown without seven first-choice players - captain Andrew Gale, who was completing a disciplinary ban at Worcester, and six away on Test duty with England in the West Indies.

They are reportedly considering whether to ask England if leg-spinner Adil Rashid, still uncapped after missing out on selection for the first two Tests, can return home early to bolster their squad.

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Yorkshire seal move for Pujara after Khan leaves

Yorkshire have signed India international Cheteshwar Pujara until the end of May after cancelling the contract of Younus Khan.

Younus Khan wants to play for Pakistan Credit: Press Association

Younus was set to be Yorkshire's overseas signing for 2015, but the batsman is now looking to be part of Pakistan's potential touring party to Bangladesh, effectively ruling him out of any playing time in the LV= County Championship.

Pujara will instead link up with the Division One champions - subject to receiving a work permit - having spent time at the back end of last season with Derbyshire, scoring 219 championship runs for them.

Yorkshire director of cricket Martyn Moxon announced in a statement that Younus made his international intentions clear on Sunday, and added: "We have moved quickly to bring in Pujara and he is a superb player.

"He is an outstanding young Test cricketer, who is hungry to perform in the English game. In the brief conversations I have had with him, he is very much looking forward to be joining Yorkshire and being part of our plans."

Cheteshwar Pujara boasts nearly 9,000 first-class runs Credit: Press Association

Pujara, 27, made his international Test debut in 2010, and with six centuries in the five-day game is a highly rated part of India's squad with many seeing him as the natural successor to Rahul Dravid.

Pujara, who boasts nearly 9,000 first-class runs, will turn out for Yorkshire until Australian Aaron Finch is free of Indian Premier League commitments with Mumbai Indians.

"I was looking to return to the UK after my previous experience of county cricket, which I greatly enjoyed, and when Yorkshire made the offer I didn't think twice," Pujara said.

"To wear the same white rose Sachin Tendulkar did is going to be a great feeling for me. I hope I can contribute to further success."

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