Australia in England 2012 June 8, 2012

Bowling coach de Winter earns audition on England tour

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Allister de Winter, the former Tasmania fast bowler, will have the perfect chance to audition for the job as Australia's bowling coach after winning the role for the upcoming one-day tour of England.

The departure of Craig McDermott last month left Australia's developing attack without a mentor for the winter trip, which includes five ODIs against England and one against Ireland. Potential candidates to replace McDermott will be interviewed after the team returns home, giving de Winter a head start over his rivals.

And while some former Australia Test players such as Andy Bichel and Damien Fleming have already ruled themselves out, at least one big international name, Waqar Younis, has indicated his interest in the position. But de Winter is expected to be a front-runner after narrowly missing out on the job when McDermott was appointed last year.

Whoever is handed the task will need to continue the development of Australia's exciting young fast bowlers, including Pat Cummins, James Pattinson and Mitchell Starc, while also keeping older men such as Peter Siddle, Ben Hilfenhaus and Ryan Harris on the right track.

De Winter, the Tasmania assistant coach, has already proven himself by rebuilding the bowling action of Hilfenhaus and helping him return to international cricket last year. De Winter played a key role in encouraging Hilfenhaus to try new angles from the crease and pitch the ball fuller, and as a result Hilfenhaus collected 37 wickets at 18.18 during the series against India and West Indies.

In addition to his role with Tasmania, de Winter, 44, is the head coach of the Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash League, and he has toured with Australia in the past. He was part of the off-field team during the 2009 tour of South Africa as part of a Cricket Australia coaching development programme.

Australia's limited-overs squad departs for England on Thursday.

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Meety on June 11, 2012, 12:01 GMT

    @Hyclass - just a bit of a quickie, we have debated the merits of County cricket recently. I mentioned that the standard (IMO), is variable. You say the standard is high, you also say Starc is "mediocre". Strac is currently playing County Cricket 2 FC games he has 7/153 (@22), 3 List A games he has 6/135 which inc two 3 wicket hauls - he did get belted in one of those matches. So with tongue in cheek I ask - "Is it Starc or County cricket that is mediocre?"

  • Meety on June 11, 2012, 11:04 GMT

    @RandyOZ - fell off my chair laughing! Not sure whether you meant to be funny or not. Given the nature of your hot & cold comments over the years - I think you duffed it! LOL! Hilfy will "...fail miserably against SA and India..." - HELLO! Who played the entire 4 tests against India & cleaned up? LOL - do you know he's got 33 wickets in 6 tests against India @ 22? @Hyclass - one of the players you champion on this very site (Chris Rogers) talked about the need for a coach for batting, (know we are talking about bowling but the principles apply). He likened cricket to golf where these great players are forever tinkering with their game. Craig Mac came along when the bowlers needed tinkering with. Some states promote a totally different technique that is not ideal to remove Test standard batsmen. As far as Starc - mate he's a young bloke having a crack. He offers diversity to the bowling line up, I would say there are others better - but mediocre?

  • RandyOZ on June 11, 2012, 9:48 GMT

    @Matt. - one of the best comments i Have seen on here for a while. Hilfenhaus is an average bowler who has only eprformed against two weak teams. Will fail miserably against SA and India!

  • zenboomerang on June 11, 2012, 6:56 GMT

    @hyclass :- "I fail to understand the rationale for a fulltime bowling and batting coach at National level"... Sorry to read that, but explains many of your comments... If you think all an Oz bowling coach teaches is just to get bowlers to bowl a certain length then you fall well short in understanding the role... Then "With the exception of the mediocre Starc" - lol... 4 Tests with an @32 average (@26 batting)... Starc isn't far off the English stats of Broad (30/bat27), Anderson (30/bat11)... Time will tell, but to condemn a 22y.o. with only a few games under him is very premature...

  • on June 11, 2012, 3:08 GMT

    Australia missed an opportunity here, if we had the like of Waqar in our bowling coach ranks we could have learnt some very important test bowling skills which is priceless, that man was fast, could swing it both ways at pace, could bowl reverse swing, he was learnt his trade with Imran Khan, bowled with Wasim, and knew how to get quality test batsmen out, just think what he could have installed into our bowlers would have been priceless, we missed out and we gonna regret it.

    we already did the overseas coach and that was a hard pill to swallow but we got used to it, i just cant believe we didnt get Waqar, its like another country turning down Shane Warne as a spin bowling coach but instead hiring average state player with a good cricket brain.

  • Big-Dog on June 10, 2012, 7:40 GMT

    Probably not a bad move. De Winter together with George Bailey & Tim Coyle helped to turn Hilfenhaus's career around. Just because he never played international cricket doesnt mean he can't coach.

  • hyclass on June 10, 2012, 2:16 GMT

    I fail to understand the rationale for a fulltime bowling and batting coach at National level.Far from improving players,they can complicate and create doubt,diminishing performance,as almost certainly occured under Nielsen.If,as appears true,McDermotts advice was to pitch the ball up regardless,it hardly required a contract.It could have been written on a piece of paper.If players are chosen on their long term success at 1st class level,then one assumes that they have the necessary skills.That method succeeded for over 100 years.Intelligence is timeless.With the exception of the mediocre Starc,the entire lineup named was injured during the period in which Mcdermott was coach.Many had been injured before he arrived and it appears that nothing new was learned.Hilfenhaus was carrying injury.Upon recovering,he bowled better.I compliment DeWinter on encouraging variety,but he isnt bowling for Hilfenhaus and Hilfenhaus isnt doing anything obviously different.Excess hype resolves nothing.

  • jonesy2 on June 9, 2012, 13:00 GMT

    why not him and waqar younis? plus a spin bowling coach

  • Afsar22 on June 9, 2012, 12:20 GMT

    Waqar Younis would have been an ideal option for Australia. Waqar has a lot to offer specially for Ashes Tour.

  • tasliskr on June 9, 2012, 12:12 GMT

    not wickets and international appearances speaks 4 the coaching position........in it talent and leadership skills speaks.

  • Meety on June 11, 2012, 12:01 GMT

    @Hyclass - just a bit of a quickie, we have debated the merits of County cricket recently. I mentioned that the standard (IMO), is variable. You say the standard is high, you also say Starc is "mediocre". Strac is currently playing County Cricket 2 FC games he has 7/153 (@22), 3 List A games he has 6/135 which inc two 3 wicket hauls - he did get belted in one of those matches. So with tongue in cheek I ask - "Is it Starc or County cricket that is mediocre?"

  • Meety on June 11, 2012, 11:04 GMT

    @RandyOZ - fell off my chair laughing! Not sure whether you meant to be funny or not. Given the nature of your hot & cold comments over the years - I think you duffed it! LOL! Hilfy will "...fail miserably against SA and India..." - HELLO! Who played the entire 4 tests against India & cleaned up? LOL - do you know he's got 33 wickets in 6 tests against India @ 22? @Hyclass - one of the players you champion on this very site (Chris Rogers) talked about the need for a coach for batting, (know we are talking about bowling but the principles apply). He likened cricket to golf where these great players are forever tinkering with their game. Craig Mac came along when the bowlers needed tinkering with. Some states promote a totally different technique that is not ideal to remove Test standard batsmen. As far as Starc - mate he's a young bloke having a crack. He offers diversity to the bowling line up, I would say there are others better - but mediocre?

  • RandyOZ on June 11, 2012, 9:48 GMT

    @Matt. - one of the best comments i Have seen on here for a while. Hilfenhaus is an average bowler who has only eprformed against two weak teams. Will fail miserably against SA and India!

  • zenboomerang on June 11, 2012, 6:56 GMT

    @hyclass :- "I fail to understand the rationale for a fulltime bowling and batting coach at National level"... Sorry to read that, but explains many of your comments... If you think all an Oz bowling coach teaches is just to get bowlers to bowl a certain length then you fall well short in understanding the role... Then "With the exception of the mediocre Starc" - lol... 4 Tests with an @32 average (@26 batting)... Starc isn't far off the English stats of Broad (30/bat27), Anderson (30/bat11)... Time will tell, but to condemn a 22y.o. with only a few games under him is very premature...

  • on June 11, 2012, 3:08 GMT

    Australia missed an opportunity here, if we had the like of Waqar in our bowling coach ranks we could have learnt some very important test bowling skills which is priceless, that man was fast, could swing it both ways at pace, could bowl reverse swing, he was learnt his trade with Imran Khan, bowled with Wasim, and knew how to get quality test batsmen out, just think what he could have installed into our bowlers would have been priceless, we missed out and we gonna regret it.

    we already did the overseas coach and that was a hard pill to swallow but we got used to it, i just cant believe we didnt get Waqar, its like another country turning down Shane Warne as a spin bowling coach but instead hiring average state player with a good cricket brain.

  • Big-Dog on June 10, 2012, 7:40 GMT

    Probably not a bad move. De Winter together with George Bailey & Tim Coyle helped to turn Hilfenhaus's career around. Just because he never played international cricket doesnt mean he can't coach.

  • hyclass on June 10, 2012, 2:16 GMT

    I fail to understand the rationale for a fulltime bowling and batting coach at National level.Far from improving players,they can complicate and create doubt,diminishing performance,as almost certainly occured under Nielsen.If,as appears true,McDermotts advice was to pitch the ball up regardless,it hardly required a contract.It could have been written on a piece of paper.If players are chosen on their long term success at 1st class level,then one assumes that they have the necessary skills.That method succeeded for over 100 years.Intelligence is timeless.With the exception of the mediocre Starc,the entire lineup named was injured during the period in which Mcdermott was coach.Many had been injured before he arrived and it appears that nothing new was learned.Hilfenhaus was carrying injury.Upon recovering,he bowled better.I compliment DeWinter on encouraging variety,but he isnt bowling for Hilfenhaus and Hilfenhaus isnt doing anything obviously different.Excess hype resolves nothing.

  • jonesy2 on June 9, 2012, 13:00 GMT

    why not him and waqar younis? plus a spin bowling coach

  • Afsar22 on June 9, 2012, 12:20 GMT

    Waqar Younis would have been an ideal option for Australia. Waqar has a lot to offer specially for Ashes Tour.

  • tasliskr on June 9, 2012, 12:12 GMT

    not wickets and international appearances speaks 4 the coaching position........in it talent and leadership skills speaks.

  • lazysnoopy787 on June 9, 2012, 6:16 GMT

    First Class Average: 35wkts @ 50 Ave from 21 First Class Game. He is successful at coaching domestic game but have limited (nil) international experience... Given the task is to build an attack that pushes for no.1 test ranking I think his lack of experience for playing at top level will haunt him. Mean while Waqar Younis would be best for the job... 373 test wickets for fast bowler from sub-continent and NSW bowler coaching experience has simply point out how good he is!

  • on June 9, 2012, 5:47 GMT

    Give him a chance, let's see what he can do. Even though he may not have test experience, he was pivotal in turning around the fortunes of Ben Hilfenhaus. This doesn't mean he can't make the same impact on other bowlers as he did to Hilfenhaus. He maybe an unknown to some but Hilfenhaus will certainly look forward to working with him again.

  • zenboomerang on June 9, 2012, 4:51 GMT

    Interesting that Coverdale does not give any quotes directly from de Winter, yet recently George Bailey publicly made the same comments about improving Hilfy's bowling by exactly the same methods... Perhaps it was a collaborative effort by the coaches & captain?... Either way, de Winters has done a good job with Bird, Butterworth, Faulkner, Hilfenhaus, Doherty, Krejza over a number of years & Tassies final appearances in SS & One Dayers shows how well they have done under de Winter with limited resources...

  • zenboomerang on June 9, 2012, 4:08 GMT

    @Governor... Being a Test bowler doesn't make you a good coach, maybe a good mentor if they are any good at that role... Takes years of work to become a v.g. coach let alone at a national level - McDermott is a good example... Can think of dozens of top coaches that never played at a top level in many sports... One also has to look at their FC coaching success or failures as some coaches can disrupt squads easily...

  • Governor on June 9, 2012, 0:04 GMT

    Gee, Cricket Australia is following the Troy Cooley path of 2006. There is nothing against Al De Winter. He has not played a game of test cricket. Even though I was a harsh judge on the appointment of Craig McDermott, the Australian bowling squad would listen to the words of a former test champion like Waqar Younis. He has played test cricket. What else can u say? Would you listen to a shield bowler turn bowling coach or Waqar Younis, Wasim Akram, Craig McDermott or DK Lillee? THey suceeded at test level.

  • on June 8, 2012, 15:23 GMT

    De Winter has good credentials. There are plenty of former bowlers with the right coaching ideas. What about Geoff Lawson or Bruce Reid?

  • spence1324 on June 8, 2012, 13:53 GMT

    Is the tour still on? Because cricket Australia seems to be in chaos from players trying to sell there souls for more money to Big sponsorship deals being broken,however im sure @randy0z and @jonesy02 will be on here to say everything is still ' Finger lickin good' in Australian cricket.

  • on June 8, 2012, 13:20 GMT

    Waqar Younis would have been great, never herd of this fella but if he can do the job like he did for hilfy then thumbs up

  • Meety on June 8, 2012, 13:09 GMT

    Looks like he has the inside running, slightly surprised given that he was suppose to be comfortable in the role he already has. Although obviously this is a far more high profile role & a promotion of sorts. Good luck to him, was keen on Waqar. I have no problems with the short nature of de Winter's stint, I have a leaning toward needs based coaching for tours & home series & in between for that matter too!

  • popcorn on June 8, 2012, 12:02 GMT

    This is great news. He has been my first choice based on the results he has demonstrated.

  • Matt. on June 8, 2012, 11:04 GMT

    anyone who can make hilfenhaus look competent must be a genius

  • tasliskr on June 8, 2012, 10:22 GMT

    if he is selected,its a good choice .....knows well about tasmanians like bird, hilfy and other domestic heroes ...and proven as a good coach too with the wins in recent years......my thumps up 4 him

  • jeauxx on June 8, 2012, 7:44 GMT

    Don't know much about this fellow, but if he can do with all of Australia quicks what he has done for Hilfenhaus and Jackson Bird, that can only be a good thing.

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  • jeauxx on June 8, 2012, 7:44 GMT

    Don't know much about this fellow, but if he can do with all of Australia quicks what he has done for Hilfenhaus and Jackson Bird, that can only be a good thing.

  • tasliskr on June 8, 2012, 10:22 GMT

    if he is selected,its a good choice .....knows well about tasmanians like bird, hilfy and other domestic heroes ...and proven as a good coach too with the wins in recent years......my thumps up 4 him

  • Matt. on June 8, 2012, 11:04 GMT

    anyone who can make hilfenhaus look competent must be a genius

  • popcorn on June 8, 2012, 12:02 GMT

    This is great news. He has been my first choice based on the results he has demonstrated.

  • Meety on June 8, 2012, 13:09 GMT

    Looks like he has the inside running, slightly surprised given that he was suppose to be comfortable in the role he already has. Although obviously this is a far more high profile role & a promotion of sorts. Good luck to him, was keen on Waqar. I have no problems with the short nature of de Winter's stint, I have a leaning toward needs based coaching for tours & home series & in between for that matter too!

  • on June 8, 2012, 13:20 GMT

    Waqar Younis would have been great, never herd of this fella but if he can do the job like he did for hilfy then thumbs up

  • spence1324 on June 8, 2012, 13:53 GMT

    Is the tour still on? Because cricket Australia seems to be in chaos from players trying to sell there souls for more money to Big sponsorship deals being broken,however im sure @randy0z and @jonesy02 will be on here to say everything is still ' Finger lickin good' in Australian cricket.

  • on June 8, 2012, 15:23 GMT

    De Winter has good credentials. There are plenty of former bowlers with the right coaching ideas. What about Geoff Lawson or Bruce Reid?

  • Governor on June 9, 2012, 0:04 GMT

    Gee, Cricket Australia is following the Troy Cooley path of 2006. There is nothing against Al De Winter. He has not played a game of test cricket. Even though I was a harsh judge on the appointment of Craig McDermott, the Australian bowling squad would listen to the words of a former test champion like Waqar Younis. He has played test cricket. What else can u say? Would you listen to a shield bowler turn bowling coach or Waqar Younis, Wasim Akram, Craig McDermott or DK Lillee? THey suceeded at test level.

  • zenboomerang on June 9, 2012, 4:08 GMT

    @Governor... Being a Test bowler doesn't make you a good coach, maybe a good mentor if they are any good at that role... Takes years of work to become a v.g. coach let alone at a national level - McDermott is a good example... Can think of dozens of top coaches that never played at a top level in many sports... One also has to look at their FC coaching success or failures as some coaches can disrupt squads easily...