Former New South Wales Blues captain Dominic Thornely will take on the head coaching role of the record-setting Breakers from next season.
Thornely, 40, replaces former Australian player Joanne Broadbent, who stepped down in late April after seven seasons as head coach.
Interim head coach for the past two months, Thornely was the Breakers assistant coach during their record 19th and 20th titles over the last two seasons. He was also assistant to Broadbent at the Sydney Thunder in that period.
“(I’m) extremely honoured and humbled. The NSW Breakers have got an amazing history … they’re pioneers of women’s cricket, so to be able engage with their program, be involved with that and lead that program is really exciting,” said Thornely.
As a member of the Blues squad for 15 seasons, he won two Sheffield Shield titles in 2004/05 and 2007/08, as well as three domestic One-Day title victories.
He captained the Blues 19 times in One-Day and Sheffield Shield cricket between 2007 and 2009.
Only former Australian Test wicketkeeper Brad Haddin and paceman Stuart Clark have played more domestic limited-overs matches for the Blues than Thornely.
He played 78 games. Haddin represented the Blues in 89 and Clark in 84 matches.
Thornely scored 4,224 First Class runs for the Blues at an average of nearly 45.
At the conclusion of his playing career, he spent five years in the corporate sector, that included the marketing and operations department of Cricket NSW.
Thornely was also batting coach for the Blues in 2016/17.
WATCH: First interview with Dom Thornely as Breakers head coach
General Manager, Cricket Performance, David Moore said Cricket NSW was in Thornely’s DNA.
“He came here for work experience about 25 years ago, was a wonderful young cricketer, played a lot of underage cricket for us and then graduated to the Blues, captained the Blues and now he’s plying his trade as a coach,” said Moore.
“Dom has been willing to develop. He started with our Under 17 boys’ program and he moved into the assistant coach’s role with the women when required.
“This means a lot to people at Cricket NSW because Dom is a Blue through and through, whether it’s male or female.”
In a change from previous seasons, Thornely will be solely responsible for the Breakers and oversee the new Women’s Transition Academy squad.
“(It will) have players on the verge of being in the Breakers group,” said Thornely.
“It’s an opportunity for me to really evolve what women’s cricket looks like here in NSW and allow (the Thunder and Sixers) to run their two separate programs.”
Thornely said his measure of success will not solely be about winning titles.
“My measure of success is more around the culture and the connectivity of this group.
“Yes, 20 out of 23 is an amazing feat, but we’ve also got to understand that the opposition definitely are coming and we’re respectful of that.
“It’s about the player you want to become because the rest then takes care of itself. You get results, you get runs, you get wickets and you get selected in good cricket teams.”