Ballance backs Brathwaite to shine for Yorkshire

Gary Ballance in action for Yorkshire
Gary Ballance in action for Yorkshire

Gary Ballance is backing West Indies Test opener Kraigg Brathwaite to shine during his short overseas spell with Yorkshire.

Brathwaite has signed on for the final two Specsavers County Championship matches of the summer, starting against bottom side Warwickshire at Headingley next Tuesday.

The 24-year-old will replace Shaun Marsh, who played against Surrey at the Oval this week before returning home to Perth to prepare for Western Australia’s domestic summer.

White Rose captain Ballance knows all about Brathwaite.

He played against him in the drawn three-match Test series in the Caribbean at the start of 2015 when Brathwaite scored a second-innings century in the second Test, which the hosts lost.

And he watched the right-hander score 134 and 95 in the West Indies’ win over England at Headingley at the end of last month.

“Kraigg’s a good player, a gutsy player,” said Ballance.

“I think that will be good for us, especially in conditions here.

“He will put a massive price on his wicket. The bowler will have to get him out.

“It’s just been one of those years for us where a few lads have been out of form.

“We haven’t quite gelled, but we showed what we can do against Middlesex.

“When we bat well as a unit, we can put scores on the board. Hopefully that will give us confidence for the rest of the season.

“I played against him in the West Indies and he got runs there as well as a few at Headingley the other week.

“He’s an international player who has done very well at Test-match level.”