Yorkshire unveil Gillespie and Jaques
Yorkshire have appointed former Australia paceman Jason Gillespie as their new first-team coach and unveiled his countryman Phil Jaques as their overseas player for the next two seasons.
Gillespie, who represented the White Rose in 2006 and 2007, returns to Headingley Carnegie to take up the role vacated by Craig White, who ended a 21-year association with his home county two weeks ago to pursue a career as an umpire.
The 36-year-old, who took 259 wickets in 71 Tests for Australia, will be in charge of day to day first team duties and lessen the workload of director of professional cricket Martyn Moxon.
The appointment of Gillespie signals a major overhaul of the Yorkshire coaching system after all five of the coaching staff under Moxon were told to reapply for four new positions.
Batting coach Kevin Sharp, academy director and bowling coach Steve Oldham and second team coach and assistant bowling coach John Blain have all left the club after failing to retain their places in the new structure.
Only Ian Dews, who is now director of cricket development, remains at Headingley. Former Kent coach Paul Farbrace has been appointed as second team coach, while Richard Damms will assist Dews in the role of development manager.
Jaques also returns to Yorkshire, having scored 2,447 first-class runs at an average of 61.92 in his previous spell with the club between 2004 and 2005.
The left-handed opener is no longer in Australia’s plans, but at the age of 32, and with a fine record in county cricket behind him, his arrival is something of a coup for a team looking to secure a return to Division One of the LV= County Championship at the first attempt.
Gillespie is in Zimbabwe, coaching a Mid West Rhinos team featuring Yorkshire’s Gary Ballance, but he released a statement about his new role.
He said: “To be able to go back there in a coaching capacity is a fantastic opportunity. When opportunities like being first team coach at Yorkshire come up you don't turn them down.
“The one thing I'll be bringing to Yorkshire is a bit of fun and enjoyment, but making sure our preparation is spot on and leaving no stone unturned.”
Moxon, who will cede day-to-day control of the first team to Gillespie when he arrives in March, said: “Even if we’d have won the championship this probably would have happened anyway. Unfortunately it’s tied in with relegation so it can be seen as a kneejerk reaction. It most certainly isn’t that.
“I received good reports from Australia about Jason's coaching career so far.
“He has a vast playing experience, played in one of the best teams there has ever been and he's talking from a position of strength as far as the bowling coaching goes.
"I'm delighted he's joining us and he's got experience of the club. I'm sure he's going to do a fantastic job.”
Moxon was also keen to hail the acquisition of Jaques and believes he will have a huge influence on the club's younger performers.
He said: “Last year we set about trying to go it alone, with predominantly our own players, and it became evident we still needed a bit of help to achieve what we want to achieve.
“Too many of our own players are still learning their own game and it showed at times where we had superiority and couldn't capitalise.
“We need that little bit of quality and experience at this stage in the short term and hopefully in the long term it will benefit the younger players. That is why we signed Phil.
“He’s a tremendous player, has a tremendous record in England over the years and he has played here before.
“He was well liked and was very good at helping the younger players last time he was here and having signed him now, he is very keen to pass on his experience to our current crop of players. He is an excellent addition to our team.”