ONE club man Steve Patterson admits helping to develop a new Yorkshire four-day captain is a big part of his role over the next two years.

Patterson, 37, has just signed a new contract, keeping him at Emerald Headingley until the end of 2022.

The county’s four-day captain will continue in that role next summer, but he admits 2022 is up for discussion.

“I’m open to any and all suggestions because my overriding goal is to leave the team in a better place than when I found it,” said the seamer, who has taken 420 first-class wickets.

“I’m certainly going to be doing it next year, but what happens in 2022 will depend on how things go.

“The one thing I’ve always had in mind is that someone is going to have to replace me as captain. And it’s a big job.

“If anything, you look forward to 2022 and I’m 18 months older, it might be that I don’t play every game.

“It could be that I captain when I play and we breed a new captain when I don’t. It’s not something which has really been discussed yet.

“When I took over, we were in the process of losing a lot of senior players and had a lot of youngsters.

“My first port of call was to steady the ship, and we’re now in a position to be competing at the right end of the competition. We have to continue that development, but I’m quite flexible with how that happens.”

Smoothing the way for a prolonged period of success at Emerald Headingley is something which greatly excites the Beverley-born player.

He said: “A big part of the reason why this deal is two years is that, although we have an exciting crop of young bowlers, it is not 100 per cent sure they can be relied on physically just yet.

“Ben Coad was outstanding again this summer, but he missed a few games through injury. That’s happened for the last couple of years.

“Matthew Fisher was superb in that first game at Durham, but he picked up a minor injury and missed some cricket.

“Matthew Waite’s shoulder injury ruled him out of the entire summer.

“Martyn Moxon (director of cricket) made it clear to me that he and Andrew Gale (coach) want me around the squad for a couple more years, partly for that reason.

“I didn’t want to outstay my welcome. But once it was clear the club wanted me around for more than just next year, I was happy to sign for longer.

“Hopefully once I do finish, these young lads are ready to take it on and run with it.”

Patterson will still have plenty of experience around him for the next two years, including marquee signings Dawid Malan and Dom Bess.

Batsman Malan signed last winter and off-spinner Bess this, both on four-year contracts.

Patterson said: “We saw Dawid’s quality in the summer and Dom’s quality last year while he was with us on loan.

“Put those two factors in with the development we have seen in Matthew Fisher and Jordan Thompson, just to name a couple, and we are getting everything in place to be able to compete at the top end of the competition.”

Patterson made his first-class debut for Yorkshire in 2005 and has now played 159 games for the county he loves dearly.

He added: “It’s always been my wish and my goal to play my entire career for Yorkshire, they are the county I grew up watching and supporting as a kid, and agreeing a new two-year deal effectively guarantees I will do that.

“I’m delighted about that and excited for what the next couple of years have in store.”