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Cricket Coaches Australia goes global!

27 October 2016 | John Hayes

HP Course HK

Cricket Hong Kong recently hosted the Cricket Australia High Performance Coaching Program from the 18th to the 23rd of October in Kowloon, Hong Kong.

The program was attended by coaches from all over the world; Hong Kong, India, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Singapore, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, South Korea, West Indies & Australia.

We were embarking on an amazing cricket and cultural experience. Charlie Burke, Cricket Hong Kong’s Director of Cricket was excited by the prospect of having a vast array of experience and knowledge in the associate nations backyard.

Day one was met with excitement and nerves, it was almost like sitting in the changerooms awaiting the toss to see if you had to open the batting on day one against an ominous attack and hoping you didn’t nick off first ball. Let’s be honest, there was over 125 matches of test match experience in the room, let alone 330+ ODIs!

Darren Holder, Cricket Australia’s High Performance Coach Development Manager kicked off proceedings and set the scene for what was to be an exhausting (but exciting) six days of learning.

Our coaching candidates worked through numerous topics including, coaching Australian Teams, resources, support, facilitating and learning whilst also learning about Hong Kong Cricket and how the relatively small national has evolved and learnt to complete on the big stage.

Darren provided insight to the Australian Cricket Pathway and our One Team projects that are aimed to bring Australian Cricket closer but also ensure we provide sustainable programs for the future. Joining Darren as part of the Australian contingent was Jeff Thomas (Coach Development Manager, QC), Jono Connor (Ph.D. Scholar, Bupa NCC) and yours truly, John Hayes (Coach Development Manager, CT). I was on debut at my first HP course as a facilitator & presenter, safe to say I was a little nervous but took to social media duties to calm my nerves. Got to love twitter!

Our coaches were provided an opportunity to facilitate training sessions for the Hong Kong National Squad which was a challenging activity. Unfortunately, we encountered some weather issues with two unseasonable typhoons sweeping through Hong Kong and limiting our outdoor activities and keeping Charlie on his toes rearranging venues and transport, a tricky task. As all good coaches do, we made it work and challenged our candidates to utilise the available venues and tight spaces to achieve the desired outcomes, which they did.

Outdoor session at Kowloon Cricket Club

Over the next few days we would work through our presentations & activities, welcome in specialist guest such as; Ryan Campbell (Kowloon Cricket Club Head Coach), Trevor Penney (CHK Fielding Consultant), Simon Cook (CHK Head Coach), Dr Leigh Jones (HKRU Head of High Performance), Tom Summers (CHK Physical Performance Coach), and Sachin Bajaj (Global Cricket School Founder & Managing Director). 

Our coaching candidates concluded the week outside working through practical coaching assessments which addressed a variety of problems coaches face in practice. They were asked to apply concepts, frameworks and philosophies outlined across the week and did a very good job in completing this challenging task.

The learning doesn’t stop there as the residential component of the program is merely a stimulus for the journey toward becoming a HP Coach. Candidates now embark upon a range of post-course assessment tasks over the next 6-12 months culminating in their application and interview for a HP Coaching Position.

Mike Hussey and Chris Rogers were two of the Australian coaches who attended the course - you can check out an interview from Cricket Hong Kong below: