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McDermott returns to Cricket Australia

Daniel Brettig

March 7, 2013

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Craig McDermott looks on during a nets session, Newlands, Cape Town, November 7, 2011
Craig McDermott is returning to the fold with a role at Cricket Australia's Centre of Excellence © Getty Images
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Craig McDermott is set to once again guide the development of Australia's most promising young fast bowlers. A little less than a year after he ended a fruitful stint as the national team's bowling coach, McDermott is returning to the fold with a role at Cricket Australia's Centre of Excellence (CoE) in Brisbane.

Under an agreement struck between CA and McDermott, elements of his Pace Bowling Australia programme will be incorporated into the CoE, further encouraging the talent identification and educational progress that has been made via a series of clinics held around Australia over the summer.

The major benefit of the arrangement will be that McDermott is again in a position of influence over the nation's best young fast men, having previously enjoyed great success in mentoring the likes of James Pattinson and Mitchell Starc while also overseeing the reinvention of Peter Siddle. Given the poverty of resources currently available to the national selectors in other areas, the strength of the the pace bowling stocks must be accentuated.

"I'll be back working with all the best young blokes in the country again, which will be nice," McDermott told ESPNcricinfo. "Basically I'm working at the CoE. If bowlers come through the centre, certainly the likes of (Pat) Cummins, or if those guys are going on the A tour to England this year, they'll certainly be coming up to the CoE beforehand and I'll have some input with those guys preparing for a tour.

"I'm not sure what will happen with the Aussie team before their Ashes stint but if they come through Brisbane, I'll work with them there. In the meantime, it's been a good thing for me to get back to the grassroots. I just spotted a young guy in Melbourne last week and I've just rung Victoria about having a look at him."

Like most followers of Australian cricket, McDermott's brow has furrowed at the team's poor results so far in India, and he noted the lack of runs had left the bowlers dreadfully exposed in conditions most unforgiving to pacemen. He has remained in touch with Pattinson and Siddle, but was unsure about why the former had been given only two three-over spells on the first bowling day of the series in Chennai.

"I'm not really sure why they did that, I'm not up to speed with the inner workings at the moment, but it looked a bit odd to me as well," McDermott said. "If they were worried about his workloads, why would they pick him? Other than that he has bowled pretty well over there so far.

"Hopefully he can back-up for the third Test, they've got a week off between matches, so I'd suggest they'll be having a spell and trying to get up for Mohali."

McDermott's role will include travel on numerous Australian Under-19 tours, and also a visit to India later this year with a delegation of young prospects to bowl at the MRF Pace Foundation in Chennai. There are also plans for the setting up of a series of junior academies in Brisbane, Townsville, Mackay, Gold Coast, Sydney, Lismore and Melbourne, each catering for up to 30 players so internal trial matches may be played.

"That's going to keep us pretty busy," McDermott said. "The academies are proper athlete development programmes with physio screening, strength and conditioning programmes, and focus on developing life skills as well as their cricket skills."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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Posted by zenboomerang on (March 9, 2013, 3:20 GMT)

Not sure what the article is for (or some comments)... We all know that when McDermott quit his CA Oz bowling coach job was because he was going to the CoE in Brisbane - as was advertised last year in which included a couple of former greats applying for it...

Craig also found that the amount of away travel was becoming hard on his family that live in Brisbane, so in the end it was a good fit all around...

Posted by Paul_Rampley on (March 8, 2013, 4:33 GMT)

Great to see Mcdermott back, we need him guiding our bowlers

Posted by venkatesh018 on (March 7, 2013, 14:32 GMT)

The best news for Cricket Australia in a disappointing week.

Posted by Sir.Ivor on (March 7, 2013, 14:20 GMT)

Yogander Reddy, you must remember that there are only1 players in a team. It is no use having so many who have the same set of skills that is bowling fast. One Philander is probably more effective. Then there is the small matter of fitness, In their quest for speed I feel Australia are missing out. I think Australians should shun the gym culture and go for old fashioned training methods. Like running, pull ups on the the horizontal bar and the like. The Garners,Ambroses and Walshes of yesterday never got injured. And they bowled fast with other skills as well.

Posted by PrasPunter on (March 7, 2013, 13:20 GMT)

Our fast-bowling development is in the safest hands of Billy !! no doubt - but what about our spinning stocks !! Why not get Warnie as the full-time spin coach ? Or Murali for that matter.. Even Saqlain Mustaq is an excellent candidate . If at all we shed some of our ego and get one of these great spinners on-board !!!

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 8:39 GMT)

Thats awesome news well done sir, now we just need a decent spin coach hehe

Posted by Sanj747 on (March 7, 2013, 8:35 GMT)

Finally a positive move. Need more of this. Our present bowling coach De Winter and Di Venuto who is appointed as the batting coach and will start after the Indian tour both have not played at test level. Aus need a decent batting coach like England have Gooch.

Posted by vj_gooner on (March 7, 2013, 7:31 GMT)

This is really massive! He shouldn't have been let go off in the first place. He bought discipline to the attack.

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Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
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