Lancashire title triumph proves happy end for Kyle Hogg

Kyle Hogg
Kyle Hogg picked up a season's best haul of 50 Championship wickets

Kyle Hogg succeeded where both father and grandfather failed by helping Lancashire win the County Championship.

Hogg's father Willie spent four seasons in the late 1970s trying in vain, just as his grandad, West Indian Test legend Sonny Ramadhin, had in his one season at Old Trafford in 1964.

But being part of a title-winning team did not look on when an injured Hogg missed this year's first five matches.

"I was actually wondering whether I'd get in the team," Hogg told BBC Sport.

"I missed the first five games, when we were beating everyone that turned up.

"But thankfully I got in the team and it turned out well."

While Hogg nursed his early season hamstring injury, Lancashire had other heroes as they won their first two matches at Aigburth, both by an innings, first against Sussex, then

After drawing against Sussex at Hove, they then had the help of England's Jimmy Anderson to earn two more victories at Edgbaston against Warwickshire and in the first Roses match of the summer against Yorkshire.

But Anderson's return to international duty for the rest of the summer earned Hogg his chance - and he wasted no time sealing his place.

In Lancashire's next game against Hampshire, he took 7-28, comfortably his career-best, followed it up with four more scalps in the second innings for an astonishing match haul of 11-59.

And 28-year-old Hogg, who has taken so long to truly make the breakthrough in County Championship cricket, has not looked back, ending up second in Lancashire's Championship bowling averages and with his summer haul of 50 wickets only just behind the contributions of Gary Keedy (61) and Glen Chapple (55).

Added to that, Hogg once again weighed in with important runs down the order, once again topping 300 for the season and hitting his customary two half-centuries at an average of 21.47 - and, even more crucially, getting them when it mattered too late on in the season.

That adds up to a key contribution from a player once so surplus to requirements that he was allowed out on loan to Worcestershire and Nottinghamshire in 2007 and played just one game for the county in 2008.

But, after showing encouraging signs in 2009 and 2010, Hogg went into this summer intent on truly knuckling down, having spent last winter working for a music company as a roadie. And, at the age of 28, he has finally hit the right notes.

"We've come so close over the years," he said. "And to finally get over the line is a massive achievement.

"But it was a great effort by everyone involved and I think we deserved it."

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