Fleming interested in coaching New Zealand’s T20 team

Stephen Fleming interested T20 coach New Zealand cricket

Stephen Fleming: “It’s based on my passion and love for New Zealand cricket”

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Former New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming has expressed his interest in coaching the Black Caps’ Twenty20 side.

Fleming’s comments come after ex-New Zealand seamer recently suggested that New Zealand remove head coach Mike Hesson and captain Kane Williamson from the Twenty20 set-up.

However, while Fleming, who coaches in the Indian Premier League (IPL) and Big Bash League (BBL), also put forth Daniel Vettori’s name, he admitted that he has been impressed with what Hesson has accomplished since taking over as head coach.

“It’s based on my passion and love for New Zealand cricket,” Fleming told Trackside Radio as quoted by ESPNcricinfo. “I’ve got a very good relationship with Craig McMillan [the current batting coach] and spend a lot of time talking to him about where the game is going and what he sees. So I enjoy passing on that knowledge and it comes back to wanting the New Zealand team to be strong.

“I enjoy going away and having a strong New Zealand team performing well around the world, it helps my job and I enjoy getting the New Zealand players in the sides that I’ve got.

“At some stage, who knows and I think Daniel would be the same. I’d love to help, but I certainly appreciate and admire the work Mike has done.”

Hesson will have a long break once New Zealand’s ongoing home series against England concludes in early April. However, while New Zealand will be inactive until they play Pakistan in October, Fleming feels it is going to become increasingly difficult for Hesson to coach in all three formats.

“You’ve got to think for a modern day coach these days, to be spending 250-300 days away, or involved in the job, travelling and hotels and being away from the family, that’s unsustainable,” he said. “So Simon [Doull] makes some good points there about looking after your coaches and maybe T20 is one form of the game where there’s an opportunity for the head coach to have some time off.

“Whether you develop a Craig McMillan or another young coach coming forward, or you get an old dog in and maybe Vettori or myself come in to spend a bit of time there?

“It’s whether it keeps Mike Hesson fresh, it’s whether it falls into line with what Mike wants. But I think it’s worth discussing going forward as the schedule gets more cluttered. What I’ve heard from NZ Cricket and Mike right now is that the balance is pretty good, so he’s pretty happy to continue what he’s doing. But it needs to be explored.”

New Zealand have suffered a small stretch of disappointment in the shortest format as of late as they conceded their No.1 ranking when Pakistan came from 1-0 down to beat them 2-1.

Furthermore, in the recent T20 tri-series against Australia and England, New Zealand only managed to beat England once and lost their four other games, which included the final against Australia.

“If you’re bouncing from each form, sometimes you can miss the subtleties of the game that are developing behind closed doors, because you’re so focused on a Test or one-day series,” Fleming said. “We’ve got to make sure we’re relevant in all forms and have got the selectors, coaches and personnel looking at the right things.”

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