New Zealand Cricket on Sunday appointed former Proteas fast bowler Morne Morkel as a member of the coaching group for their women’s team ahead of next month’s ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in South Africa.
Morkel, who was part of the Namibia coaching staff for the recent men’s T20 World Cup in Australia, will join the White Ferns as Tour Coach where he will provide fast bowling and general coaching support during the tournament.
The former South Africa bowler, who will join up with the group ahead of the New Zealand women’s opening pool match against Australia, said he was relishing the opportunity to experience coaching in the women’s game.
“The opportunity to join the White Ferns group and get involved in the women’s game was a no-brainer for me,” Morkel was quoted as saying by New Zealand Cricket.
“The women’s game is growing so rapidly around the world, and this a great opportunity for me to build experience in the women’s game and share my knowledge of international cricket to help this team get better,” he said.
A three-format international, Morkel played 86 Tests, 117 ODIs and 44 T20s for South Africa between 2006 and 2018, taking 544 wickets. As a player, he featured in eight World Cups as well as in domestic leagues around the globe, including the Indian Premier League, the Vitality Blast, and the Big Bash.
But this will be his first assignment with a women’s team.
“I’ve been following the women’s game and the White Ferns closely over the last couple of years, especially since moving to Australia and seeing their players who have played in the Women’s Big Bash. It’s a talented group of players and they have a very exciting pace bowling attack which I’ll be able to support Ben (head coach Ben Sawyer)with,” he added.
Morkel said he was looking forward to joining up with the team for an exciting World Cup campaign.
“I know a lot about the South African conditions and have spent a lot of time working here in the past year, so that’s some important knowledge that I’ll be able to share with this group during the tournament.c Playing in a World Cup is always exciting, so I’m looking forward to sharing that experience with the group and helping them achieve their goals.
“I’m really looking forward to meeting the group when they arrive in South Africa and getting started,” he said.
White Ferns’s head coach Ben Sawyer said Morkel would bring valuable knowledge of the South African conditions to the group.
“We’re really excited to have Morne join the group for the World Cup,” said Sawyer. “Morne had an outstanding international record as a player, and his first-hand experience in major international tournaments, coupled with his knowledge of the conditions in South Africa, will make him a huge asset.
“We’re looking forward to welcoming Morne into the group and supporting him with his coaching development in South Africa.”
The White Ferns will name their squad for the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup on Friday, before departing for South Africa on January 23.