Skipper and opening batsman Daryl Mitchell has given Worcestershire a massive boost by signing a new four year contract – and he hopes the best years of his career are still to come.
Mitchell still had two years to run of his existing deal but has now committed himself to the county until the end of the 2018 campaign.
The 30-year-old has just enjoyed his most prolific season and scored 1,334 runs in the LV = County Championship with five centuries – the second highest tally in Division Two behind Hampshire's James Vince.
Badsey-born Mitchell was also Worcestershire's leading scorer in the NatWest T20 Blast and amassed nearly 2,000 runs in all competitions.
He said: "I'm really pleased to sign the contract. Obviously coming off the back of a really good season for the lads, with getting promotion to Division One, it's a nice way to finish the year.
"Worcestershire is the only club I ever want to play for. I grew up watching and supporting the county, then going through the Academy, the second team and captaining the club is the pinnacle.
"The county means everything to me. It's been a fantastic journey and I'm happy for it to continue for at least another four years.
"Hopefully the best years are ahead for me. This was the best year I've had in terms of runs and averages and things like that.
"I've just about grown up enough and know my own game enough and hopefully I can really kick on this next few years."
Director of Cricket Steve Rhodes, who has championed Mitchell's cause for international honours this summer, said: "I'm absolutely delighted. Mitch is an important and integral part of our push for better things at the club.
"He is one of our best players so for him to secure his future with Worcestershire is a huge boost for the club.
"To know we've got our best players signed up long-term is excellent news going forward. "Daryl is Worcestershire through and through from his early years as an Evesham schoolboy to what he is now which is county captain.
"He is very proud of the county and is exactly the type of cricketer we want here for a period of time."
Mitchell made his debut for the county in 2005 and has scored 8,320 first class, 2,404 List A and 1,245 T20 runs as well as being a useful performer with the ball in limited overs cricket.