Sad to leave but O’Brien eyes an exciting future

Northants v Welsh Dragons (T20), County Ground, Wantage Road, Northampton.'Niall O'Brien.

Northants v Welsh Dragons (T20), County Ground, Wantage Road, Northampton.'Niall O'Brien.

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Niall O’Brien paid tribute to the people he will be leaving behind after confirming his move to Leicestershire.

The Ireland international has spent six years as a Northamptonshire player but was told he could leave the club despite having a year left to run on his contract.

And, while confessing he would be sad to Wantage Road behind, O’Brien is enthused about the next step his career has taken.

“I had six great years here and I would happily have played out the rest of my career with Northamptonshire,” he explained.

“I loved playing with the lads and I loved playing for Northamptonshire.

“In professional sport you have to make those hard-nosed decisions,

“But once you get over the initial thought process of leaving your friends and leaving the club you have played for for six years, there is plenty for me to be really positive about.

“My agent met with Leicestershire numerous times while I was in Sri Lanka and was very impressed with them.

“There is a good environment for me to succeed there.

“They are signing me because they want big things from me.”

O’Brien also paid tribute to the Northamptonshire faithful for the backing he has received in his time at Wantage Road

“I would like to thank the fans absolutely from the bottom of my heart.

“They have been brilliant to me the whole time I have been here.

“I’ve had a great relationship with them and a few of them have been in touch asking me not to go.

“I enjoyed my six years. I’ve had my ups and downs and my altercations – I’m a colourful lad.

“But I am getting more mature now and hopefully I can go on and enjoy many years of success with Leicestershire.”

Read The Big Interview with Niall O’Brien in this week’s Northamptonshire Telegraph where he explains his departure, his relationship with David Capel and gives his view on the youngsters coming through at Wantage Road.