Gale takes over at Yorkshire with backing of predecessor

Andrew Gale was yesterday appointed captain of Yorkshire as a replacement for Anthony McGrath, who stood down at the beginning of the week, and believes that, with the backing of the senior players in the dressing room, he can improve the struggling county's fortunes.

Flanked by McGrath during a press conference at Headingley, Gale said: "It was great to see Anthony come out today and support me fully. Jacques Rudolph is a strong vice-captain, and I get along very well with Joe Sayers and Gerard Brophy."

Though Gale will have to deal with a demanding membership keen to end a seven-year trophy drought, the Dewsbury-born left-hander stressed that his first task was to prevent another relegation battle in the First Division.

"I'm not going to make empty promises about winning this trophy or that trophy," said Gale, who also signed a new three-year contract at the club yesterday. "What I will say is that with hard work and determination we can compete with the likes of Durham and Nottinghamshire consistently.

"It's a sign of the club's strength that we've had 11 lads involved with England in some capacity this winter – from full level down to the Under-19s. The challenge is to channel that ability into consistent results on the pitch," Gale added.

The former England batsman Marcus Trescothick has signed a new three-year contract with Somerset, committing himself to the club until 2012, with an option for a further year. The left-hander, who will captain the county next season said: "I am absolutely delighted to have signed a new contract with Somerset."