Suffolk’s new player-coach Simon Guy looking to develop players
SIMON Guy wasted no time in putting Suffolk’s cricketers through their paces in his first official session in charge.
The former Yorkshire wicket-keeper and batsman was soon making his mark in his role as the county’s new player-coach.
Ipswich School’s indoor sports hall was a hive of activity as Guy had his new charges practising sweep shots against spin bowling ahead of the forthcoming season.
The 34-year-old only returned to England two weeks ago after three weeks spent in South Africa with the England Development Programme Under-17 and Under-19 squads.
His enthusiasm for his role is as immediately apparent when he talks as it is when he is putting his theories into practice.
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Guy, who played two one-day matches and one three-day games for Suffolk last season, met Suffolk coach Bobby Flack on a Level 4 coaching course about five years ago.
He said: “Bobby asked me if I was interested and let me know his thoughts on Suffolk and how they wanted to move forward.
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“I had not really thought about a player-coach role, but we discussed what the role would entail.
“I am still passionate about playing and so agreed to take the role on.”
Guy, who made 37 first-class appearances for Yorkshire after making his debut in 2001, said: “We are looking to create the right environment to support our younger players and develop them as well.
“We are looking to develop them for the future so that we can potentially be more successful in the long term.
“The four young spinners who were here probably learnt more today, discussing spin bowling with Chris Swallow, than they would normally in ten weeks.”
Guy will this season be player-coach with Sheffield Collegiate – the club where ex-England captain Michael Vaughan started his career – in the Yorkshire County Premier League.
Born in Rotherham but now living in Wakefield, Guy said: “I won’t be travelling down to turn up and do things by halves.
“I feel very proud and privileged to be representing Suffolk as a county. I will be supporting Justin (Bishop) in his role as skipper as well as keeping wicket and batting.
“We have some good young wicket-keepers in the county, so I will be helping them technically and encouraging them to do well.
“I will bat wherever I am told, but I would imagine I will bat between four and six in the one-dayers and in the championship matches I will be flexible and slot in between the younger batsmen.”