Ireland news December 15, 2013

Johnston accepts dual coaching role

ESPNcricinfo staff

Trent Johnston will continue to play an influential role in Ireland cricket following his retirement. He has accepted a new dual role that will see him take charge of the Ireland women's team and also become fast-bowling coach at the recently-formed national academy.

Johnston, 39, ended his 198-cap international career on Friday when he was part of the side that lifted the ICC InterContinental Cup - his 12th title in a glorious ten-year span that also saw him feature in two World Cups and three World T20s.

"It's very exciting and a great honour to be given these new challenges by Cricket Ireland," said Johnston, who takes over the women's role from Jeremy Bray. "It's certainly a new chapter in my life and one I'm looking forward to immensely.

Johnston is on a two-year deal to coach Ireland women. His first task is to oversee a tri-series in Qatar in January with South Africa and Pakistan. That is followed by Ireland's first World T20 finals in Bangladesh.

"It's going to be tough because we'll be the only Associate Member there - but I wouldn't have it any other way," Johnston said. "The Qatar series will be ideal preparation for Bangladesh. It'll let me get my feet under the table and get to know the squad.

"I've worked with most of them before but this is different in that I'll be Head Coach this time around and I'll have ultimate responsibility. I'll enjoy that and hopefully in time I'll get them playing the brand of cricket that I've played."

Johnston has also been charged with moulding the next generation of Ireland pace bowlers with his part-time appointment as the fast bowling coach at the national academy.

"It's a great job fit for me and it'll be great helping shape the future of Irish cricket," he said. "I'm going to be busy as I'm also keeping my role as Leinster Lightning coach."

Performance Director Richard Holdsworth was delighted that he was able to keep Johnston in the Cricket Ireland family.

"Trent has played in over 15 countries worldwide and just under 200 times for Ireland," Holdsworth said. "He has moved further into coaching in recent times, and we firmly believe he is the right man to lead the Ireland women's team for the next two years.

"He has an enormous understanding of the game, a work-ethic which is second to none, and is constantly willing to learn. He has excellent technical and tactical knowledge and captained Ireland 60 times. Trent knows how important team ethic is in winning teams and that is sure to rub-off on the players. "

Holdsworth is confident that Johnston will prove a perfect role model for the young Academy bowlers and the Ireland under-age squads.

"It is fitting that the man who has led the Ireland bowling attack for ten years, is now going to be instrumental in the development of the next generation of young quicks," he said.