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News

Dom Bess joins Yorkshire on four-year deal

He joined on a loan deal in 2019, after accepting that his opportunities for first-team cricket were too limited at Somerset

Dominic Bess belts out an appeal  •  Getty Images

Dominic Bess belts out an appeal  •  Getty Images

Dom Bess has signed a four-year deal with Yorkshire, the club whom he joined on a loan deal in 2019, after accepting that his opportunities for first-team cricket were too limited at Somerset, where his England team-mate Jack Leach remains the first-choice spinner.
Bess's new deal will keep him at Headingley until the end of the 2024 season, and follows months of speculation about his future after he overtook Leach in the England pecking order.
He played in Cape Town and Port Elizabeth in January, where he took a maiden five-wicket haul, and then featured ahead of Leach in all six behind-closed-doors Tests this summer - although twice was not required to bowl. To date he has taken 19 wickets at 40.57 in ten Tests, and also averages 27.87 with the bat.
With his contract at Somerset due to expire, Bess had also been linked with a move to Warwickshire, where he had been earmarked as a potential successor to the club's long-term overseas signing, Jeetan Patel.
However, Yorkshire's coach, Andrew Gale, said last year that they were keen to make the signing permanent after Bess's four initial appearances, in which he claimed seven wickets at 33.42 but showed his potential against the eventual county champions, Essex, claiming three first-innings wickets as well as a composed 91 not out.
"A club like Yorkshire, it's a massive club with a lot of history behind it. It is very exciting for me to commit four years to Yorkshire and hopefully I can add a little bit to the squad," Bess said.
"Certainly in terms of understanding the club, I think it (loan spell) was a great option. I certainly think understanding how the club runs and how the lads are is really important. For me, this is a great opportunity and somewhere I am really excited to join.
"Hopefully the opportunities I can get at Yorkshire will develop my learning to kick on and play international cricket for a long time. That is the ultimate goal, but I also want to be part of a Yorkshire side that are again winning championships.
"I want us to be pushing for one day and T20 success as well. Last year, I certainly got the hint that the club want to push for the T20 and 50 over competition.
"I think that it is a great opportunity for me to develop my white ball skills and show that I'm a three dimensional player. I think that white ball really shows that.
"It will be really important to get some trophies and certainly the county championship back at Yorkshire."
Bess made his first-class debut for Somerset in 2016, and has claimed 79 first-class wickets for the club at 27.29. However, he has only featured in three List A games and one T20 match, and the opportunity to push his development across formats is another reason to make the switch.
"This is not a decision that I've taken lightly," Bess said. "I've been with Somerset since joining the Academy, I've grown up here and some of my best friends are in the team with me.
"It's been a really hard decision. There were good discussions with the club and they offered a contract extension, however I think it's the right decision in terms of needing first-team opportunities. Given the direction that I want to go with my cricket I think it's time to move on.
Martyn Moxon, Yorkshire's Director of Cricket said: "We are thrilled that Dom will be joining us on a permanent deal from next season.
"Dom has showed his quality and potential this year with England, and made a huge impression at Yorkshire during his loan spell last season.
"The signing of Dom will bolster our spin options but it also gives us more batting depth down the order. Dom will be a key asset to the Club across all formats, and will add further strength to the young and exciting squad that is being assembled."