Hoggard 'devastated' by Yorkshire release

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The Independent Online

Matthew Hoggard is "shocked and bitterly disappointed" after Yorkshire told him they will not offer him a new contract.

Hoggard, Yorkshire's leading wicket-taker in this season's LV County Championship, finds the news hard to take after holding talks about the possibility of taking on the captaincy next season.



The former England pace bowler told The Times: "I'm shocked and bitterly disappointed. I think I've been loyal to Yorkshire.



"I wanted to commit the rest of my career to the club and I would have relished the thought of captaincy, which I had discussed with (chairman) Colin Graves and (director of cricket) Martyn Moxon.



"Now I have effectively been sacked and I'm not even going to play for Yorkshire again, which makes me incredibly sad."



He continued: "What really upsets me is that I wasn't given the chance in my final game to say goodbye to the Yorkshire supporters, who have been so good to me over the years.



"Other players who knew they weren't going to be around next year were given a handshake and a send-off in front of the fans.



"All I got after 15 years at the club was a cup of coffee in the chief executive's office."



The White Rose have cited financial reasons for their decision to release the 32-year-old, who has been with the county for 15 seasons.



The England and Wales Cricket Board are introducing age-related incentive payments for counties next season, which will not help the cause of experienced players bidding to stay in the game.



Several other counties are believed to have expressed an interest in Hoggard, whose last England Test appearance came in New Zealand in March last year.



He added: "I'm just going to have to look at other options now.



"I was looking forward to using my experience to bring on the next generation of Yorkshire bowlers, but I'll have to do that somewhere else now.



"I still feel as though I've got a good few years in me and it's up to me now to prove that Yorkshire were wrong to let me go."

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