Western Australia go on recruiting drive
Western Australia have named a host of new recruits, including the former Queensland allrounder Ashley Noffke, in their squad for the 2009-10 season. The Warriors have added heavily to their squad from both interstate and within Western Australia following a disappointing summer in which they finished second-last in all three formats.
There was no room for the batsmen Craig Simmons and Clint Heron, the allrounder Matt Johnston, or the fast bowlers Arron Crawford, Paul Davis and Trent Kelly, all of whom have been in and out of the starting line-up recently. The Warriors have opted for experience over youth in their fast-bowling recruitment with Michael Hogan, 28, picked up from Sydney's grade competition and Brad Knowles, 27, handed a contract after shifting from Victoria.
Hogan is a former New South Wales Country representative from Newcastle who was fifth on the wicket tally in Sydney's club competition last season. Knowles played a handful of one-day games for the Bushrangers four years ago before moving to Western Australia, where he broke into the Warriors side for a couple of appearances late last summer.
Also given contracts for 2009-10 were Drew Porter and Luke Towers, who made their state debuts last season, and the South African-born allrounder Justin Coetzee. A prolific run scorer in Perth's grade competition, Coetzee, 25, is also an impressive bowler whose left-arm fast-medium picked up ten wickets in a warm-up game against the touring Pakistanis in 2004-05.
The legspinner Josh Mangan was upgraded to a full contract from the rookie list while the fast bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile went the other way and was placed on a rookie deal having previously had a full contract. Western Australia's other new rookies include the fast bowlers Jason Behrendorff, who was recruited from the ACT, and Simon Branston.
Nick Death, Chris Thompson and Chris Wood were not offered new rookie contracts while the West Indies captain Chris Gayle has been signed specifically for the Twenty20 tournament. The coach Tom Moody said Western Australia were on the right path following a difficult period in 2008-09.
"The Retravision Warriors entered a rebuilding phase last summer, having lost five senior players to retirement at the conclusion of the 2007-08 season," Moody said. "We are very confident that we are on the right track and have the ideal balance of youth and experience in this squad."
Western Australia squad David Bandy, Justin Coetzee, Liam Davis, Brett Dorey, Theo Doropoulos, Ben Edmondson, Aaron Heal, Michael Hogan, Michael Hussey (Cricket Australia contract), Mitchell Johnson (CA), Brad Knowles, Steve Magoffin, Josh Mangan, Shaun Marsh (CA), Ashley Noffke, Marcus North (CA), Luke Pomersbach, Drew Porter, Wes Robinson, Luke Ronchi, Luke Towers, Adam Voges.
Rookies Jason Behrendorff, Simon Branston, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Michael Johnson, Mitchell Marsh, Marcus Stoinis.