Cricket Wellington is making significant changes to its coaching staff for the upcoming season. Justine Dunce will be joining the Spotlight Reporting Wellington Blaze as a Support Coach in late September, bringing her valuable coaching experience and playing background to the team. She has recently received the 'Outstanding Contribution and Services to Coaching' award at the New Zealand Cricket Awards and spent the winter honing her skills in England. Justine will also serve as the Head Coach for the U17's Women's team and the Provincial A's.
As previously announced, Shane Jurgensen will become the Head Coach for all three formats of the Firebirds in November, adding his wealth of experience to the team after fulfilling his commitments with the BLACKCAPS at the ODI World Cup in India.
Lance Dry will step in as interim Head Coach for the Firebirds' Plunket Shield team, while Luke Woodcock will handle the Blaze's preseason preparations. Lance will lead the team into their first Plunket Shield match on October 20th, with Azhar Abbas as the Assistant Coach - Pace Bowling and Mohit Rao as the Assistant Coach - Batting.
Mohit Rao will also assume responsibility for the Provincial A Men’s side, while Justine Dunce takes the Provincial A Women’s head role. These appointments set Cricket Wellington’s next generation up for success, with high-level coaches available to more of the system.
Once Shane Jurgensen arrives in November, Lance Dry will transition back to the Blaze team as Assistant Coach for the HBJS team. Luke Woodcock will take on the role of Head (Campaign) Coach, supported by Lance's expertise. When the Super Smash approaches, Lance will become the Head Coach, and Luke will assist him.
Lance will return to the Firebirds during the later stages of the Plunket Shield as the Assistant Coach - Spin Bowling.
These coaching changes signify an exciting season ahead for Cricket Wellington, with a focus on growth and achievement for both the Firebirds and Blaze teams. Director of Cricket, Bruce Edgar, says that this new structure will pay dividends for players and coaches alike.
“Structuring our coaching staff in a more dynamic way will provide unrivalled development opportunities for players and coaches alike and will pave the way for future generations of coaches to have a realistic pathway to high performance teams.”