PETER JOHNSTON has been confirmed as Cricket Ireland's new permanent National Academy and Performance Manager, with Scott Irvine succeeding him as full-time Performance Analyst.
Johnston, one of a select band of Irish coaches with an ECB Level Four qualification, has fulfilled a variety of roles for CI, including almost a decade holding a dual role as assistant coach and performance analyst with the men’s senior team.
“Peter moved over from the men’s team to an Acting Manager role three months ago and has immersed himself in the Shapoorji Pallonji Academy,” said Cricket Ireland Performance Director Richard Holdsworth.
“He’s been instrumental in setting up a new senior and emerging player programme with Ryan Eagleson. He is Ireland-based, has great knowledge of our fringe players and young talent coming through, and with 10 years’ experience with the senior team, understands what it takes to become an Irish international cricketer.
“He is not only one of a few Level 4 Master coaches in Ireland, but has great knowledge of talent development and the pressures which a player can undergo trying to make it to the top, and with this understanding is well placed to help develop our young players into Test players of the future.”
Johnston is relishing the opportunity to mould the next generation of Irish international cricketers, passing on knowledge garnered over the past 15 years, including roles at three World Cups and five ICC World Twenty20 finals.
“Working with the Academy players, coaches and specialists such as Ed Joyce and Andrew White over the last few months has been very enjoyable and rewarding,” the 37-year-old said.
“I’ve been encouraged by the work-rate, drive and ambition of the players and coaching staff, and it is a delight to take on this pivotal role in a full-time capacity.”
“It is our vision to continually challenge the best emerging players so that they are robust and ready to perform at the highest level. Already this winter we have seen Academy players Josh Little and Lorcan Tucker touring with the senior squad.
“The opportunity for our next 'cabs off the ranks’ to play for the Ireland Wolves in the summer will no doubt help more players to gain senior honours and graduate from the Academy to become full-time professionals with Cricket Ireland.”
As part of his duties Johnston will be head coach of the Ireland Wolves side that includes fixtures this season against a Bangladesh XI, Gloucestershire 2nd XI and Scotland A.
Holdsworth confirmed that one of Johnston's previous roles would be taken by Irvine, as full-time Performance Analyst with Cricket Ireland, while Ben Smith and former Ireland all-rounder Andrew White will share assistant coach duties until the post is filled on a permanent basis.
"With Peter leaving his role as Assistant Coach and Performance Analyst, he will be replaced by Scott Irvine in the latter role. He started out with Cricket Ireland on an internship as part of our partnership with Ulster University,” said Holdsworth.
“Scott plays the game and is a Level 3 coach, and he has learned very quickly the function and skill of match analysis - so important to our players with knowledge on the opposition as well as reviewing their own performance.
“After graduating last year with first-class honours, Scott took on a part-time role with us, supporting the Hanley Energy Inter-Provincial competitions, as well as both the men’s and women’s senior teams.
“He will now lead the performance analysis area across the men’s and women’s game, with the support of another intern from Ulster University, Ross Harkin."