Ed Joyce has been appointed as the permanent Head Coach of the Ireland Women’s cricket team on a two-year contract.
Joyce, 40, took over as interim Head Coach in June 2019, and took the women’s team to the recent ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Qualifier.
He has been involved in the international coaching set-up with the Irish men’s, women’s and performance pathway teams since he announced his international retirement in May 2018.
Speaking at Malahide Cricket Club, Joyce said: “It’s a great time to have been offered this opportunity, and I had no hesitation in accepting the role full-time.
“The part-time contracts introduced this year, the rise in profile of women’s cricket and women’s sport in general, and the investment in facilities and support structures around the senior team all point to a commitment from Cricket Ireland to grow the game and lift our standards to compete on the world stage.”
“While we were all obviously disappointed to have missed out on qualification for the T20 World Cup, what impressed me about the squad was the players’ commitment to learn and the talent that began to emerge as the games came along. It wasn’t just the senior players that stood up, but a number of the newer players to the senior team showed what they can offer.
“I was particularly happy with the fight the team showed in difficult positions against both Thailand and Bangladesh. Our fielding and bowling in both was outstanding and that character, being shown by a very young team, is going to be very important going forward.”
“The standard of women’s cricket amongst the top tier nations has grown immensely in the last five years, and we know that to remain competitive that we need to continue to build our domestic structures, and invest in skills and fitness levels.
"In addition, we will be working over winter on individual game plans for the players. We have experimented a fair bit over the last few months with roles and positions within the squad, and with more time we will start to see the benefits of this come through.”
Richard Holdsworth, Performance Director for Cricket Ireland, said: "We are delighted that Ed has accepted the role on a permanent basis. When he took on the interim Head Coach role three months ago, I said it was great to have such a world-class cricketer and budding international coach available to call upon.
"That applies just as much now, and we had no hesitation in offering him the opportunity. The calmness he brings, and the sense of togetherness within the team, was evident to all who saw the side in action in Scotland earlier in the month.
“With the home season coming to an end, and the Qualifier completed, Ed will now have the opportunity to further develop the skillset and mindset of the wider squad, and start to focus on 50 over cricket ahead of the World Cup Qualifier in Sri Lanka next July.
"He will additionally oversee the Shapoorji Pallonji Women’s Academy - and to support this work we hope to soon appoint a new role to work underneath Ed that will focus on those players, the girls under-age talent pathway, and coaching support to the national team.”
“We wish Ed well in the role, but we know that if he can bring a fraction of the skill, knowledge and personal determination he developed as a player to this role, then we will be very fortunate to have his leadership and influence guiding the women’s squad in coming years.”