NZ Women vs Aus Women 2020-21 – Ryan Harris keen for extended stint as bowling coach with Australia women’s team | Cricket

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Ryan Harris is keen for a more permanent role with the Australia women’s team, having been brought on as a short-term bowling coach for the ongoing New Zealand tour.

Harris admitted he was “a bit nervous” when he came into the squad but was very grateful with how the team has accepted him and was impressed by the bowlers he has worked with on the trip.

There is a gap in the team’s schedule after this tour, which will include a period of leave, then a significant number of them will head to England for the Hundred before the possibility of an Australia-Australia A series in August heading into a home summer that is set to include tours by India, England and then the 2022 ODI World Cup back in New Zealand.

“The easy answer is yes,” Harris said when asked if he would like to retain his role. “We’ll have to see what happens with that post this tour. By the sounds of it, there might be an opportunity, and it’s something I’ll be watching quite closely.

“I was a little bit nervous coming in. I haven’t done a lot of work with the women’s teams before – done bits and pieces through my other job in Brisbane, but to get in here and see how they train, they are great to work with. [I have] Had some great discussions, not just with the bowlers but other players as well. They’ve been really good to me, accepting me, talking about my experiences which has been excellent.”

The 17-player squad has given Harris plenty to work with, ranging from the experienced members such as Megan Schutt and Ellyse Perry through to the youngsters in Darcie Brown and Hannah Darlington.

Brown made her debut in the second T20I, pushing the speed gun above 120kph, and could have a chance to play in the final ODI if Tayla Vlaeminck is rested having had consecutive matches – although the forecast for Saturday is not overly promising.




Australia’s pace bowling future: Darcie Brown, Hannah Darlington and Tayla Vlaeminck © Getty Images


“The sky’s the limit,” Harris said of Brown. “I look at her and the ease in the way she runs in, delivers the ball, her pace is really good for her age and still think there is room for improvement there which is the scary thing. When we talk about bowlers and how they approach the wicket, the basic skills and mechanics, she’s got it all. Makes me jealous actually because I had to work to bowl fast.”

This tour has been Vlaeminck’s return to international cricket for the first time since before the T20 World Cup last year. She has had a limited workload in the two ODIs – six overs and five overs – but picked up her first wicket of the series when she had Lauren Down caught at slip on Wednesday.

“Tayla, for example, is still learning. She’s so raw,” Harris said. “[She] Loves the game, just wants to bowl. If she could, she’d bowl 15-20 overs a day to bowl the perfect ball. I love that. I see a little bit of myself in her; [she] wants to get better at it, wants to bowl fast now and wants success now. That’s a great attitude to have.”

While Darlington, who was selected with more of a T20 focus, has not been handed a debut on the tour, Harris said she had used every chance she could to soak up experience.

“What I’ve found with Hannah is she just wants to learn about how can she be better, talking to her about different lengths to hit, who you are playing against. The knowledge about how you approach the changes you have to make for different opposition. For a young player she’s very mature and understands the game really well. She’s asked some really good questions.”

Andrew McGlashan is a deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo


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