Ryan Sidebottom is determined not to let his personal swansong detract from Yorkshire’s bid to regain the County Championship title.
The 39-year-old has announced that he will retire from professional cricket at the end of the summer season.
It would be nice, personally, to win silverware but it’s never been about me. It’s about contributing as a team, which we didn’t do as well at times last year.Yorkshire’s Ryan Sidebottom
The swing bowler will bring the curtain down on a glittering career which has included winning the World Twenty20 title with England and five County Championship titles, three with Yorkshire.
A sixth first-class crown would be the icing on the cake for the father-of-two, who admitted last season’s near miss left him with “unfinished business”.
Sidebottom said: “Last year we came so close in all formats and just to get pipped at the post. The lads are very driven, chomping at the bit to get going. It’s a very focused young side that are ready to get going this season.
“It would be nice, personally, to win silverware but it’s never been about me. It’s about contributing as a team, which we didn’t do as well at times last year.”
Sidebottom made his Yorkshire debut in 1997 before winning his first County Championship title under David Byas’ leadership in 2001.
He added two more titles during a seven-year stint at Nottinghamshire where he resurrected an England career that had previously featured just one Test match.
The left-armer became an integral part of the England set-up and he was part of the squad that won the 2010 Twenty20 World Cup in the Caribbean.
He returned to Yorkshire ahead of the 2011 season and spearheaded the attack to back-to-back title wins between 2014 and 2015.
“I’m quite an emotional person and I’m sure there will be a few tears when it does come time to hang my boots up,” Sidebottom added.
“To do 20 years is a proud achievement and to retire on top after 20 years means so much. Hopefully, I can go out with a bang by contributing to the lads winning another title.
“Come the end of this season, I’ll sit down and reflect properly on my career, have a few beers and have a nice celebration with family and friends and the players. But for now, I’m just excited by this season.”