Cricket Australia on Tuesday confirmed that Shelley Nitschke has been appointed head coach of the Australian Women’s Cricket Team for the next four years. Nitschke, 45, was appointed interim head coach in May after Matthew Mott stepped down, leading Australia to a gold medal in their historic Commonwealth Games debut in Birmingham in July.
One of the world’s top all-around athletes, Nitschke joined the Australian team in 2005 at the age of 28 and went on to play 80 One-Day Internationals, 36 Twenty20’s and six test matches. During that time, she has accumulated more than 3,000 runs and won more than 150 orthodox bowling hits with her left hand.
She was named ICC Female Cricket of the Year in 2010 and won four consecutive Belinda Clark Awards (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012). Nitschke retired from international cricket in 2011 and went on to take on various coaching roles with South Australia, Adelaide Strikers – where she also played two seasons 2015-2017 – and Cricket Australia.
In 2018 she was appointed assistant coach of the Australian Women’s Team and in 2019 was appointed Head Coach of the Perth Scorchers WBBL team, leading the team to its first win of the Big League Bash for Girls (WBBL) last summer.
Nitschke will honor her Perth Scorchers contract for this season, before stepping down at the end of the WBBL.
“I am honored to have been given this opportunity to lead the team full-time and continue to build on the legacy created by Matthew Mott. While I have enjoyed my time working as assistant coach. , I feel the time has come to build and lead this team in what is shaping up to be a new era with a new interface coaching team and the retirement of Rachael Haynes“, she said in an official statement.
She added: “Rach’s loss will certainly be felt, but it’s a great opportunity for others to raise their hands both from a leadership perspective as well as with leadership and in the field. this”.
Nitschke’s first assignment will be Australia’s five-match tour of India in December, with a series of bilateral home matches against Pakistan in January to wrap up Australia’s preparations ahead of the Championship. ICC T20 women’s world kick in February in South Africa.
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