New Zealand v Australia ODIs - Women's
'It makes me jealous': Sky the limit for young quicks
Australia's up-and-coming crop of fast bowlers have left a major impression on assistant coach and former fast bowler Ryan Harris
9 April 2021, 02:39 PM AEST
The sky is the limit for Australia's express pace young guns Darcie Brown and Tayla Vlaeminck, former fast bowler and current assistant coach Ryan Harris believes.
Harris has been touring New Zealand with the Australia's world-beating women's team, working with the squad's strong crop of fast bowlers in what is his first taste of coaching the female game.
Watching Vlaeminck and Brown, who both possess the rare ability to regularly hit speeds above 120kph, go about their business has been one of the highlights for Harris.
Vlaeminck, 22, has rattled New Zealand's top order across three matches to date, after making a long-awaited return from a year-long foot injury, while 18-year-old Brown debuted in the second T20I in Napier last week.
"What can Darcie do in the game? Well it's up to her ... the sky is the limit, I look at her and the ease in the way she does run into the wicket and delivers the ball, her pace is really good for her age," Harris said on Friday.
"I think there's still room for improvement there as well, which is the scary thing.
"Tayla is still learning (too), she's so raw, she loves the game and if she could she'd bowl 15, 20 overs a day just to bowl the perfect ball.
"I love that, I see a bit of myself in her, just a bull at the gate who wants to get better and wants it now, wants to bowl fast and wants success. It's a great attitude to have."
Australia took a bumper group of pace bowlers on the six-game limited-overs tour, ensuring depth on the bench should injury strike, given the requirement for quarantine upon entering New Zealand.
It means Harris has had the opportunity not only to work with Vlaeminck and Brown, and experienced pace bowlers Megan Schutt, Ellyse Perry and Nicola Carey, but also Belinda Vakarewa and Tahlia McGrath.
It is the raw ability of Brown, who only graduated from Year 12 last year and who shares Harris' connection with Adelaide's Northern Districts Cricket Club, that has left a lasting impression on the former Australia fast bowler.
"Darcie just does it so easy," Harris said. "It makes me jealous, actually, because I had to work hard to bowl fast and she does it so easy as well.
"She's got it all. She's an athlete, she gets into the wicket easy and gets through her delivery stride with ease."
Australia do not have a permanent fast-bowling coach, with Matthew Mott and assistant Shelley Nitschke the only full-time coaching staff associated with the world's top-ranked team.
Sydney Sixers coach Ben Sawyer had been contracted as a fast-bowling mentor for Australia's training camps and tours since late 2018, but with his role as an assistant at NSW rendering him unavailable for the New Zealand trip, the opportunity arose for Harris.
Having had a taste of it, and knowing Australia have a demanding schedule across the 2021-22 summer including home series against India and England and the 2022 ODI World Cup in New Zealand, Harris said he would jump at the chance to be involved again.
"The easy answer to that is yes," he said. "We'll have to see what happens post this tour.
"By the sounds of it there might be an opportunity there and it's something I'll be watching quite closely. I'm hopefully going to be sitting down with Matthew Mott and Shawn Flegler as well and discuss what the process is from now with that.
"I was a little bit nervous coming in, I haven't done a lot of work with the women's players before … but to get here and see how they train, they're great to work with, they love learning about the game.
"They've been really accepting of me and talking to me about my experiences as well."
CommBank tour of New Zealand 2021
Australia ODI & T20I Squad: Meg Lanning (c), Rachael Haynes (vc), Darcie Brown, Nicola Carey, Hannah Darlington, Ashleigh Gardner, Alyssa Healy, Jess Jonassen, Tahlia McGrath, Sophie Molineux, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Molly Strano, Georgia Wareham, Belinda Vakarewa, Tayla Vlaeminck
New Zealand ODI squad: Amy Satterthwaite (capt), Lauren Down, Maddy Green, Brooke Halliday, Hayley Jensen, Leigh Kasperek, Amelia Kerr, Jess Kerr, Frances Mackay, Rosemary Mair, Katey Martin (wk), Hannah Rowe, Lea Tahuhu
1st T20: Australia won by six wickets
2nd T20: New Zealand won by four wickets
3rd T20: Play abandoned due to rain
1st ODI: Australia won by six wickets
2nd ODI: Australia won by 71 runs
All matches will be shown live in Australia on Fox Cricket and Kayo