A new recruit for New South Wales May 27, 2005

Waugh's warning for Thorpe

Cricinfo staff

Steve Waugh says Graham Thorpe was always a respected opponent © Getty Images

Steve Waugh believes Graham Thorpe must play at a regular intensity unfamiliar to county cricket if his move to New South Wales is going to be a success. Waugh, writing in his Daily Telegraph column, said Thorpe must also immerse himself in the team and influence others in a way that Imran Khan, the state's last import in 1983-84, was unable to achieve.

"Why do we need a Pom to help us out when we've just won the Pura Cup and there is plenty of young talent to foster and develop?" Waugh wrote. He then admitted that the lure of a batting coach/mentor job was too good for Thorpe to ignore, and it offered New South Wales quality back-up when players such as Michael Clarke and Simon Katich were on international duty.

However, Waugh warned that the appointment would depend on Thorpe's attitude, and said that his quiet personality wouldn't mean an increase in domestic crowds. "For this venture to be a success, he must give NSW something it hasn't already got, or can't get from some promising youngsters," he said. "He must play with an intensity that isn't always part of English county cricket, look to improve his own game, inject enthusiasm and influence those around him."

Thorpe has agreed to a coaching role for the second half of next season, and will also play grade cricket in Sydney. Trevor Bayliss, the New South Wales coach, said Thorpe would be considered for a batting spot only if the side, which beat Queensland for the Pura Cup in March, was not performing.

Waugh said Thorpe, who is currently in his 99th Test at Lord's, was a player Australia respected: "He excelled under pressure with a technique that held up in varying conditions.".