Derbyshire have appointed experienced former fast bowler AJ Harris as the new head of the Cricket Derbyshire Academy in partnership with the University of Derby.
The highly respected 40-year-old, who has previously served the Club as Second XI Coach and Bowling Coach, will now lead the quest to develop Derbyshire’s next home-grown England cricketer.
Harris enjoyed a 17-year professional playing career with Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire, taking 451 first-class wickets and a further 225 dismissals in the limited-overs forms of the game.
He will be assisted by former Second XI Coach Stephen Stubbings who brings a further 13 years and 139 first-class matches of experience as a top-order batsman.
Both Harris and Stubbings are already pursuing their ECB Level 4 coaching qualification - the highest accolade in English cricket coaching.
They begin their new role with immediate effect with the objective of developing the talented youngsters that emerge from Derbyshire Cricket Board’s age group system into elite county and international players.
Former Academy Director Howard Dytham will now focus on his role within Derbyshire Cricket Board.
Elite Performance Director Graeme Welch said: “Giving our Academy prospects the chance to work regularly with AJ and Stubbo will be massive for those youngsters, absolutely massive.
“The first-class and limited-overs experience they have can only be good for what is without doubt a very talented group of young cricketers.
“These appointments take us a step closer to completing our elite performance player pathway.
“Once that is fully in place we’ll be setup to achieve our ambition of success for Derbyshire on the field and to produce England players. I really am confident we can achieve that.”
Chief Executive Simon Storey added: “It’s important that recognise the excellent contribution made by Howard Dytham to improving our development setup and laying strong foundations for young Derbyshire cricketers.
“The years of professional cricketing experience provided by AJ and Stephen, meanwhile, are the perfect way to head our groundbreaking development pathway. It gives us the best possible chance of producing a future England player.”
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