Worcestershire CCC are delighted to announce the appointment of Kevin Sharp as Head Coach as part of the restructuring of their coaching team – and he is “honoured and privileged” to be handed the role.

Former Yorkshire batsman and coach Sharp has stepped up from his joint role as Second Eleven-Batting Coach at New Road – a post he has held for the past four years – and will take up his new duties from next week.

His appointment reflects the County’s desire for continuity as the team seeks to build on its success of recent years with a young but rapidly maturing group of players.

Former Worcestershire CCC paceman Alan Richardson, who enjoyed great success in the twilight years of his career at the County, has joined the staff as Bowling Coach – a role he previously held with Warwickshire.

Now Richardson is returning to bring his experience and coaching quality to bear upon a developing team-squad environment.

To enable these moves, Matt Mason has been given responsibility for the Second Eleven in addition to a number of outreach coaching programmes involving young player and coach development.

Both Alan and Matt are looking forward to working with Kevin and captain Joe Leach as Worcestershire prepare for Specsavers County Championship Division One cricket in 2018.

Sharp has vast coaching experience and England Test captain Joe Root worked closely with him during his formative years with Yorkshire and has often credited him as being a huge influence on his career.

He also oversaw the development of the likes of Jonny Bairstow, Garry Ballance, Adam Lyth and Andrew Gale during his spell as a coach at Yorkshire.

Sharp was also invited to be part of the England coaching set-up to assist with preparations for the Second Test with South Africa at Trent Bridge last summer.

After a spell coaching Shropshire, Sharp was offered the chance to return to the first class game at Blackfinch New Road in 2014 and has created a favourable impression.

Sharp said: “I am honoured and privileged that the club think of me in this way in awarding me this position. It was unexpected but I will do all I can to help Worcestershire be successful.

“I enjoy working here and have a fantastic relationship with the lads, the support staff and all the staff. One of my strengths is communicating and connecting with people.

“I spoke to Joe Leach (captain) and he is very happy and assures me all the lads are right behind me.”

Richardson returned more than 250 wickets in just four years for Worcestershire and Sharp said he has much to offer as a coach.

He said: “Alan was important as a player for Worcestershire but is also highly respected in the game as a coach and very knowledgeable.

“We are in a rich vein with these young seam bowlers at New Road who are going to need nurturing and developing and to have Alan and Mase working on their case is priceless. We’ve got the first team and second team covered.”

Worcestershire CCC Vice-Chairman Tim Curtis has led the working group striving to appoint a Head Coach.

The prolific former County opening batsman said: “We are delighted to have a coaching team led by Kevin which will continue with and build on the values that have brought the club its recent success.”