Cooley leaves his legacy
England’s final match of the tour of India marks the departure of a significant contributor to their recent success as Troy Cooley heads Down Under.
Bowling coach Cooley, 40, has switched camps to his native Australia after a three-year stint in which he has overseen England’s much-lauded Test attack.
The former Tasmania paceman underwent his final training session with the tourists today ahead of the first international contest to be staged at the Maharani Usha Raje stadium.
His first involvement with the full England side came ahead of the 2004 tour of the Caribbean, where the firepower of Andrew Flintoff, Steve Harmison, Matthew Hoggard and Simon Jones first came to prominence.
There have been further encouraging signs beyond that quartet this winter with James Anderson rediscovering the form which caused havoc at the start of his England career.
“If you had those five fast bowlers in your camp you would be pretty pleased,” Colley said.
“There are still some good fast bowlers around in the other countries but definitely when they are all firing and combine well they are a formidable attack.
“I am going to have some very fond memories. Some great things have been achieved from this group of bowlers, of which I am very proud.
"When I first came over they were a good group of bowlers with good skills and to see those develop along the way has been very exciting for me.”
Cooley was credited as the technician behind England’s use of reverse swing in last summer’s Ashes win when Flintoff and Jones, in particular, prospered against the Australians.
He has also witnessed some extraordinary individual efforts such as Hoggard’s 12-wicket match haul in Johannesburg and Harmison’s seven for 12 which decimated West Indies on their home soil.
“They all have their own unique qualities. I would hate to single any one of them out because as a unit they work very well,” said Cooley.
“The one performance would be what Harmison did in Jamaica when he took that seven-for.
“It was something outstanding and you don’t see that too often, so that will definitely stick in the memory.”
Cooley takes up his new post of overseeing Australia’s bowling programme in a fortnight.
One of his roles will be to work alongside Brett Lee, Glenn McGrath, Shane Warne and co ahead of the Ashes return, but his main goal will be to create a stronger pool of back-up bowlers.
“Having set up the English system for nurturing fast-bowling talent at Loughborough, Cooley has passed the baton to former Somerset coach Kevin Shine - both have been on duty for this current one-day series.
I’m very privileged to come into a unit working so well and with foundations firmly in place,” said Shine. “But you are always looking to improve what is already in place.
“We have some good youngsters coming through and a major part of my job is to get that next generation ready as quickly as possible. We need to make sure we have a conveyor belt for years to come.
“Troy has left it in a pretty healthy state, I have to say thank you to him for that.”
Shine has worked alongside Cooley for the past couple of years so has a good knowledge of the programmes given to individuals.
A well-travelled former fast bowler who served Hampshire, Middlesex and Somerset, he also has experience of the ups and downs involved.
“Obviously with the tactical and mental side of things I have gone through some issues when I was a county bowler,” Shine said.
“And I hope I can help guys out when they are having tough times and also stabilise them when they are having their good times.”