Cricket: Yorkshire veto more talks over Headingley

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The Independent Online
Yorkshire yesterday ruled out further negotiations with Headingley's owners aimed at resolving their long-running dispute and exploring the possibility of developing the Test venue.

Preliminary discussions into an application for Lottery funding to upgrade Headingley broke down on Wednesday night with Yorkshire complaining of "uncompromising tactics" by Paul Caddick, the chairman of the company which owns the ground.

The secret meeting had led to reports that Yorkshire were prepared to shelve their ambitious plans to relocate to a purpose-built stadium at Durkar near Wakefield - a project which led to Caddick issuing writs against various members of the past and present club administration claiming pounds 17m compensation for potential lost income.

The impasse has led to Yorkshire stressing that "the litigation will continue and it will be vigorously defended by the club".

Northamptonshire and Worcestershire yesterday stepped up their efforts to sign Devon Malcolm following his announcement yesterday that he had rejected Derbyshire's offer of a new contract.

Despite Derbyshire's hope that they would persuade Malcolm to stay, the two counties have both held preliminary talks with the 34-year-old paceman in recent weeks after he became a free agent on November 1.

They will both intensify their efforts to win the race for his signature following yesterday's announcement, with Worcestershire believed to be favourites for his services.

Dermot Reeve, the Somerset coach, plans to play one-day games for the county next season. Reeve, 34, was forced to retire from playing in 1996 because of an arthritic hip, having led Warwickshire to six trophies in the previous three summers.