Test batsman Kurtis Patterson is the new full-time NSW Blues Sheffield Shield captain after incumbent skipper Peter Nevill agreed to hand over the reins in a bid to accelerate the team’s succession planning.
Patterson has filled in as Blues captain in the past including, at the end of last season when the Blues won the Marsh One-Day Cup and finished runner-up in the Shield under his leadership.
While ‘KP’ will lead the Blue’s red ball team, superstar paceman Pat Cummins remains as captain of the Blues’ white ball team.
Patterson said he was fortunate to be taking over such a strong team with a host of leaders.
“Being appointed the full-time captain of the Blues’ four-day team is something I am very honoured and very privileged to have been asked to do,” Patterson said.
“I grew up idolising NSW cricket and have a strong love for NSW Cricket and the Blues so to be named captain is something I don’t take lightly and am very excited about.
“I want NSW cricket to be in a better place when my term is done, whenever that may be and I know I am very lucky to captain such a talented group.”
Patterson said the transition into the full-time gig was made all the more easy given Nevill’s willingness to see the team grow.
“It would be remiss of me not to thank Nev for the process and the handover of this role,” he said.
“The groundwork that he and (coach) Phil Jaques have done over the last three to four years has been fantastic. We’ve had a huge turn around in culture and have a great group of people involved.
“Nev was a fantastic leader who has left us in great shape and I’m certainly looking forward to having him around in the team if I need to call on him.”
Nevill guided the Blues to much success over his three year period at the helm, winning the 2019/20 Shield title and helping the side to the 2020/21 decider before missing the final to be with his wife for the birth of their second child.
The 17-Test gloveman remains contracted to NSW and will support Patterson in his new role, while continuing to mentor NSW’s rising batting talent that includes Jason Sangha, Jack Edwards, Baxter Holt and Matt Gilkes. The latter of whom have worn the gloves for NSW in various forms of the game over the last few years.
Nevill said he was looking forward to helping the Blues in any way he could as he headed into the back end of his stellar career.
“With KP being the next long-term captain, now is natural time for him to take over,” Nevill said.
“I’ll support him in any way he needs or wants, and I’m really looking forward to being able to make a contribution where I can with our younger players and help them move onto a successful next stage of their careers.”
The Blues begin their season with a pair of Marsh One-Day Cup games in Perth in mid-September before they kick off their Marsh Sheffield Shield campaign against Victoria at CitiPower Centre (Junction Oval) beginning on September 29.