Former international cricketers Michael Hussey and Ryan Harris will join the support staff of the Australia men’s team ahead of their Twenty20 international series against Sri Lanka and Pakistan this year.
Hussey is appointed as a mentor, while Harris will take over as the team’s bowling coach, replacing Troy Cooley, who was in charge during the Ashes series in England earlier this year. Australia’s preparation for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2020 at home begins with the back-to-back three-match T20I series against Sri Lanka and later Pakistan, the first of which begins on October 27.
Head coach Justin Langer is confident that both Hussey and Harris will add great value to the camp. “I can’t tell you how influential these guys can be on the group. It’s about building our leadership, about honing their skills as cricketers, and they can just complement the other guys who are full-time coaches. It’s nice to have different voices and different eyes and see guys of that caliber giving us feedback on what they see,” Langer said.
Langer has been following the principle of getting former players to mentor the side ahead of major tournaments. He had Ricky Ponting help him during the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2019, where Australia lost to hosts and eventual champions England in the semi-finals, after having finished second in the round-robin stage.
Ponting was replaced by his predecessor and arguably one of the finest captains in the history of game, Steve Waugh, for the Ashes, which ended in a 2-2 draw.
Australia’s best performance in T20 World Cups had come during the 2010 edition held in West Indies, where they had finished as runners-up, losing to England in the final.
“I’m very excited actually. I’m really looking forward to getting back in around the Aussie team,” Hussey said.