GARY BALLANCE has been ruled out of Yorkshire’s LV= Insurance County Championship opener against Glamorgan at Emerald Headingley on Thursday with concussion.

The White Rose county say their key batsman was the subject of a “freak accident in training”.

It is hoped his first appearance since the end of 2019 will now come against Kent at Canterbury next week.

Matthew Waite (side strain) and Jordan Thompson (calf) are also both out of the 12-man squad.

In the squad to face Glamorgan is England Test captain Joe Root, who could face his younger brother, Billy.

The Sheffield brothers met in a one-day Cup clash at Trent Bridge when batsman Billy was a Nottinghamshire player.

On that occasion, Yorkshire came out on top, with Joe hitting an unbeaten 75 in pursuit of a 186 target. He even hit Billy’s off-spin for six.

But this will be the first time they have faced each other in first-class cricket, assuming 28-year-old Billy takes his place as expected in the Glamorgan side at Emerald Headingley tomorrow morning (11am).

Both Joe, 30, and Billy came through the Yorkshire age groups as teenagers. However, left-handed batsman Billy played his last second-team game in 2013 and had to forge his path elsewhere.

He has scored five hundreds in 33 first-class appearances - three for Glamorgan, including a career-best 229 in a Championship clash with Northamptonshire in 2019.

“It will be an interesting battle, that’s for sure. But I obviously hope Joe comes out on top,” said Yorkshire’s director of cricket Martyn Moxon.

“There’s no doubt Billy is a talented player who has done well recently, particularly at Glamorgan. And we will need to get him out early because he can do some damage if not.”

While Joe made his Yorkshire first-team debut in 2009, in a one-day fixture against Essex, Billy’s first-class debut came six years later for Leeds/Bradford MCC Universities.

His maiden first-team appearance for a county came for Nottinghamshire in early 2017.

“Players develop at different stages and mature on different timescales,” added Moxon.

“Billy has always had natural talent, but making it at this level and higher is about more than just that. It’s the mental side of the game, making good decisions, having that balance between attack and defence.

“That comes with maturity and playing games, and he seems to have worked all of that out now and has gone on to post some big scores of late.

“I just hope he doesn’t do it this week.”

Yorkshire squad v Glamorgan: Patterson (C), Bess, Brook, Coad, Fisher, Kohler-Cadmore, Loten, Lyth, Olivier, Root, Tattersall (W), Willey.