Roses rivalry renewed

Gloucestershires Gareth Roderick (left), Yorkshires Andrew Gale (centre) and Lancashires  Steven Crof at Old Trafford
Gloucestershires Gareth Roderick (left), Yorkshires Andrew Gale (centre) and Lancashires Steven Crof at Old Trafford
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Lancashire and Yorkshire cricket rivalry has been resumed even though the County Championship season does not get under way for the teams until April 17.

Red Rose skipper Steven Croft and Andrew Gale have met up already at Old Trafford – the pair were together to launch the new sponsorship of the Championship by Specsavers.

The two teams will meet again in the competition in 2016 – Yorkshire are reigning champions and Lancashire have regained their place in the top flight after promotion in 2015.

The duo were joined at the Old Trafford launch by Gloucester’s Gareth Roderick.

Yorkshire are bidding for a third successive Specsavers County Championship title this year but the 32-year-old expects the challenge to be the toughest yet.

Gale said: “I believe it is the strongest division I have seen for a long time.

“You usually get a team who have scraped up or have a team whose aim is to stay in the First Division, but with teams like Surrey and Lancashire coming up, they are probably aiming to win the County Championship.”

Relations between the Red and the White Rose have not always been as cordial as they were at the launch and photo-call.

Gale suffered a suspension and was ordered to attend an anger management course after using what was perceived to be offensive and ‘discriminatory’ language against Lancashire’s Ashwell Prince in 2014.