Shelley Nitschke, the former international spinner, has been appointed as the head coach of the Australian women’s team, Cricket Australia (CA) announced on Tuesday. Notably, Nitschke was serving as the interim coach after the end of Matthew Mott’s tenure and has been a part of the setup since joining as an assistant back in 2018.
Recently, under Nitschke, the Aussies secured a Gold medal at the Commonwealth Games after defeating India in the final at Birmingham. The Adelaide-born is currently Perth Scorchers’ head coach in the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL).
Nitschke, who has appeared in 6 Tests, 80 ODIs, and 36 T20Is in her stellar seven-year international career for Australia, has held various coaching roles previously with South Australia and Adelaide Strikers.
Nitschke’s first project as the permanent head coach will be the T20I tour of India in December. Australia will then play against Pakistan at home in January before heading to South Africa to defend their T20 title at ICC Women’s T20 World Cup.
“I’m honoured to have been given this opportunity to lead the team full-time and to continue to build on the legacy created by Matthew Mott. While I enjoyed my time working as an assistant coach, I feel the time is right to step up and lead this group in what’s shaping as a new era with a new-look coaching group and the retirement of Rachael Haynes,” said Nitschke in an official statement.
“The loss of Rach will no doubt be felt, but it presents a great opportunity for others to put their hands up both from a leadership perspective as well as with the bat and in the field. Our challenge is to ensure the team continues to evolve; we’ve seen teams like India take their game to the next level, and it’s important that the players feel they have the support they need to keep getting better every day,” she added.