Farbrace leaves with a heavy heart

Paul Farbrace believes whoever replaces him as Yorkshire's second-team coach will be taking on one of the best jobs in county cricket.

Farbrace's departure from Headingley to take up a two-year contract as the head coach of the Sri Lankan national team from January 1 was confirmed yesterday.

The 46-year-old, a former assistant coach of Sri Lanka, spent two years with Yorkshire after moving from Kent ahead of the 2012 season.

He has admitted that his decision to return to international cricket was a tough one because of how much he has enjoyed his time with the White Rose, but ultimately he could not turn the opportunity down.

"Whoever gets the job is coming into one of the best jobs in county cricket," he said.

"Coaching Yorkshire's second team when you've got such a thriving Academy that's one the best in the country if not the world, a first-team coach who is willing to play those players when there's opportunities available and the quality of senior players who get the odd game in the seconds means that you're very lucky.

"Whoever comes in has got really good people around them.

"One of the reasons I came here was to get back to hands on coaching, which I didn't feel I was doing at Kent. I feel that's happened here, and I've really enjoyed it.

"I also wanted to learn from Martyn Moxon, which I feel I've done. His knowledge of county cricket and knowledge of coaching is as good as anybody's.

"I didn't know Dizzy (Jason Gillespie) at all, and we've developed a really close friendship. That, to me, has added to the amount that I've learnt.

"It's a very exciting opportunity for me, and I'm looking forward to getting on with it. But the disappointment is that I think the club is on the verge of great things. In the two years that I've been here, I've seen the club grow on and off the field."

Yorkshire's first-team coach Jason Gillespie is understandably sad to see his trusted lieutenant move on.

"Farbs has been a wonderful coach and a friend to all of us during the last couple of years. We've loved having him around. All the lads are really pleased for him, but it is our loss and certainly Sri Lanka's gain," he said.

"He's very good at dealing with people, and he's a fantastic technical and tactical coach. Sri Lankan Cricket are very lucky to have him."

While Farbrace will work alongside current SL coach Graham Ford during the latter stages of Sri Lanka's Test series against Pakistan in the UAE in early January, Yorkshire will begin their search for a new second-team coach.

They want to have someone in place by the time they travel overseas for their annual pre-season tour in mid-March.

"We will sit down over the next few weeks and work out what is the best strategy for Yorkshire Cricket," added chief executive Mark Arthur.

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