FORMER Telegraph & Argus cricket correspondent David Warner has written a book on Brian Close revealing a side of the great Yorkshire and England captain that very few people were even aware of.

Just A Few Lines...the unseen letters and memorabilia of Brian Close will be published by Great Northern Books in May.

Warner said: "Ever since their marriage over 50 years ago, Brian and his wife, Vivien, lived in Baildon, which is my home town, and shortly after his death in September 2015, Vivien told me she had been sifting through Brian's wardrobe and had gathered together a bin-liner of items she was thinking of disposing of."

"Subsequent visits to her home resulted in Vivien unearthing a treasure trove of memorabilia including scores of riveting letters which Rawdon-born Brian had started writing around 70 years ago to his best friend, John Anderson, who lived in Horsforth.

"The pair had attended Aireborough Grammar School together and John kept every letter Brian sent to him detailing his early Yorkshire and England career, his footballing days with Leeds United, Arsenal and Bradford City and his adventurous life while on National Service with the Army at Catterick.

"John died a couple of weeks after Brian and his funeral service was at the same Headingley church with the wake following at Yorkshire's Headingley headquarters, just as Brian's had done.

"The letters came to light when John's younger sister handed them over to Vivien along with autograph books filled with the names of leading cricketers from around the world and many other pieces of memorabilia either belonging to Brian or obtained by him for John.

"The whole collection is now owned by The Yorkshire Cricket Foundation, the charitable arm of Yorkshire County Cricket Club."

Close was renowned for his captaincy and incredibly competitive spirit but the book sheds new light on the former Yorkshire and England skipper.

Warner said: "Brian's letters were not short notes but in-depth commentaries several pages long, many of them written when he became England's youngest ever Test player at 18 years and 149 days and continuing until the end of MCC's controversial tour of Pakistan in 1955-56 when Pakistan umpire Idris Bergh had a bucket of water poured over him by some of the England players, almost resulting in the tour being abruptly ended.

"I thought the letters were a fascinating subject for a book because most cricket enthusiasts know of Brian's exceptional captaincy and his unwavering courage on the field of play, but the vast majority of them will have little idea that he was a prolific letter writer, even penning some of his epistles while sitting in the pavilion waiting to go into bat."

Just A Few Lines....costs £20 and can be ordered by going to or calling 01274 735056. If ordered before February 1, the purchaser can have the name of their choice printed in the back of the book which will be signed by the author and includes free package and posting in the UK.