County news September 30, 2015

Northeast named Kent captain

ESPNcricinfo staff

Sam Northeast deputised for Rob Key through much of the 2015 season © Getty Images

Sam Northeast has been named as Kent's captain for 2016, succeeding Rob Key in the role. Northeast led the side in Key's absence during much of the 2015 season and was the unanimous choice to step up from vice-captain, which he has held for the past two seasons.

While Key dropped himself from the Championship side, Northeast was Kent's outstanding batsman, scoring more than 1000 first-class runs for the first time. He was also their leading run-scorer in the T20 Blast, as Kent reached the quarter-finals in both limited-overs competitions.

"It's a great honour to become club captain of a team I've supported from a young age and follow in the footsteps of some great captains," Northeast said. "Hopefully the future is bright for Kent and I can help bring some silverware back to the club.

"I would like to congratulate Keysy on an excellent job as captain and am sure he will have a large input going forward."

Key was in his second spell as captain, having been in charge between 2006 and 2012, then resuming the job after Kent spent a season under James Tredwell.

The former England batsman has indicated he will continue to play on in 2016, when he will be 37, for which he is already under contract. He finished the season in good form, scoring consecutive hundreds in Kent's final two Championship matches against Lancashire and Glamorgan.

Of Northeast's appointment, Kent chairman of cricket, Graham Johnson, said: "Sam has been seen as a potential leader as he has developed through the Kent cricket system. He has shown maturity in the role, without it affecting his form, and he commands the respect of the dressing room.

"He is ambitious both personally and for the Kent team. The next stage of Kent cricket development at the highest level is in good hands."