Melbourne: Australia cricket chief coach Darren Lehmann says he has the “best job in the world” — but don’t expect the Ashes and World Cup-winning coach to be doing it forever. In the next two years leading up to the Champions Trophy, Australia travel to the West Indies, England, Bangladesh, New Zealand, South Africa, India and Sri Lanka, along with two jam-packed home summers, reports cricket.com.au. That leaves roughly two months of free time for those players not involved in the lucrative Indian Premier League.
Lehmann, his support staff and the players who represent their country in Test, one-day international and T20 cricket spend on average 300 days on the road each calendar year. And the constant traversing of the globe, playing three formats of the game, is why Lehmann says the position of head coach is one that comes with a short life expectancy.
“If you have a young family it’s tough — they’re at school and all those sort of things.” Lehmann said on Friday. “But it’s the best job in the world. You’d love to be able to do it for 20-30 years. don’t think you can. I think players need change occasionally.
“I won’t be doing it forever, and hopefully I get to exit in my own way. That’s means we’re playing pretty well and going OK. “If you lose a few in a row you never know, you’re under pressure again. But that’s just the way it is.”
One way to lighten the coach’s load could be to drop a format like players often do towards the end of their career. Skipper Michael Clarke was a three-form player before exiting T20 international cricket in 2011 and then one-day cricket following the World Cup triumph.
Upon taking the role almost two years ago, Lehmann was advised against sharing the job by his coaching peers. But the former left-handed batsman likes the idea of letting another coach step in to gain experience, just as New South Wales coach Trevor Bayliss did for the T20 international series against South Africa last November, aided by assistant coach Brad Hodge.
“I had some good mentoring conversations with different international coaches and they’re of the opinion splitting the role is not the way to go as a head coach,” he told cricket.com.au. “Splitting the role (with specific) assistants and (into) disciplines is a bit easier to (provide) longevity for them (support staff).
“As a head coach you need to really drive what you want to do. What you can do is when you have the end of a long tour take a break and let someone else take over a tour for a short amount of time.”