Sydney: Former England batsman Graeme Hick has been appointed as Australia's new fulltime batting coach after initially working with the team on a temporary basis. Hick has signed a contract until March 2020, Cricket Australia said on Thursday.
The 50-year-old was appointed as Cricket Australia's high performance coach in 2013 and will now be faced with tackling the team's batting problems overseas, particularly in seaming conditions of the UK and spinning pitches of the subcontinent.
During an international career spanning a decade from 1991-2001, Hick played 65 Tests and 120 ODIs for England but had a legendary First-Class record scoring 136 centuries at an average of 52.23. Hick said it was a privilege to be entrusted in the role. "I have thoroughly enjoyed my current role with Cricket Australia and have worked with some great young up and coming players," he said on Thursday (September 15). "To take the next step up with the men's team and getting the opportunity to work with some of the best players in the world is something I am really looking forward to."
Australia head coach Darren Lehmann welcomed the appointment of Hick. "Graeme worked with us during the recent ODI tour in the West Indies and we were really impressed with what he brought to the group," he said. "He is a very experienced player in all conditions and will bring a wealth of knowledge with him.
"With an ICC Champions Trophy, an Ashes Series and an ICC World Cup all to be played in England in the near future, his knowledge of those conditions will also be invaluable," Lehmann added.
Greg Blewett will return to his role as fielding coach after filling in as batting coach following the departure of Michael di Venuto earlier this year to fill a head coach role with English county side Surrey. Hick will begin his new role during the upcoming home Test series against South Africa.