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Norfolk captain planning to finish lengthy Minor Counties career at the end of 2018 season

PUBLISHED: 13:23 20 December 2017 | UPDATED: 13:23 20 December 2017

Chris Brown pictured after passing 450 Championship wickets for Norfolk, and scoring a half century against Suffolk, last season. Picture: Tim Ferley

Chris Brown pictured after passing 450 Championship wickets for Norfolk, and scoring a half century against Suffolk, last season. Picture: Tim Ferley

Tim Ferley

Norfolk captain Chris Brown will retire as a Minor Counties player at the end of next season.

Norfolk CCC 2017 AGM - Jason Reynolds, left, and David and Joyce King Memorial Young Player of the Year and Sam Arthurton, Richard Lane Player of the Season. Picture: Tim Ferley Norfolk CCC 2017 AGM - Jason Reynolds, left, and David and Joyce King Memorial Young Player of the Year and Sam Arthurton, Richard Lane Player of the Season. Picture: Tim Ferley

The 43-year-old spin bowler has skippered the county side for the past five seasons but has decided 2018 will be his 18th and final season as a Norfolk player.

Brown has a remarkable 464 Minor Counties Championship wickets to his name, from 95 matches, bowling 3,649 overs and retains an average of a wicket every 22.29 runs.

“I’ve been thinking about standing down now for the last couple of years but this time last year I’d had an excellent season and won the Frank Edwards Trophy,” the Horsford bowler explained, reflecting on his award for topping the bowling averages for the MCCA Unicorns Championship.

“So I decided to give it one more year and this year I was still performing with bat and ball but now is probably the right time to stand down, with Ashley Watson taking the reins for the one day team already. Now the cricket committee will have to identify my successor.”

Norfolk CCC 2017 AGM - David Bowker receives the Sir David Thorne Bowl for services to the club from president Gail Armstrong. Picture: Tim Ferley Norfolk CCC 2017 AGM - David Bowker receives the Sir David Thorne Bowl for services to the club from president Gail Armstrong. Picture: Tim Ferley

Brown announced his decision at the Norfolk CCC annual general meeting at Manor Park recently, where Scotland international Rob Taylor was also confirmed as next season’s professional, having scored 450 Championship runs during his first Norfolk campaign.

Opening batsman Sam Arthurton was also presented the Richard Lane Player of the Season award having averaged 46, Jason Reynolds claimed the David and Joyce King Memorial Young Player of the Year award, while long-serving committee member David Bowker was presented the Sir David Thorne Bowl for services to the club.

More: 2017 season review – Arthurton shines in both forms of the game for Norfolk

Brown claimed 26 wickets at an average of 18.80 and scored two championship 50s, averaging 34.33, as Norfolk finished fifth in the table and feels he can still contribute plenty during his final season.

“I’ve been thinking about stepping down since I turned 40 but I was still personally contributing and we were winning matches, so that’s why I carried on,” the skipper added.

“Come the end of next season I’ll continue to play club cricket and I have my coaching roles with the ECB, the Norfolk Cricket Board as Performance Manager and Gresham’s School.

“I still feel I’ve got a lot to give and I’m fortunate to have won three one-day Trophies and a Minor Counties Championship but there always comes a time for everyone and I think this is the right time for me to make this decision.”

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