The job for Phil Jaques as Blues head coach starts in earnest on Monday, when the squad returns for the beginning of pre-season training, and the former Australian and New South Wales opening batsman has a simple formula for success.
“Good people become good Blues,” said Jaques.
It is this simple premise which is the centerpiece of his coaching philosophy.
“It’s about good people … putting good people around (the team) that are going to help them become good people.
“(The players have to) work hard at their games, they’re going to … communicate honestly and openly with each other and play an attacking brand of cricket that’s good to watch and good to play and good fun for everyone.”
Jaques was announced as the Blues coach for the next three seasons last week.
He brings to the role vast experience as a player, selector and coach at all levels of NSW cricket, and told the media, at his first press conference as head coach on Tuesday, that the appointment was a dream come true.
“I’ve spent more than half my life here (at Cricket NSW),” he said on Tuesday.
“I know the organisation back to front, I know what needs to be done and (I’m) really excited to get started.”
As the Blues enter a new era with a youthful new look squad, Jaques told the media that the future looks very bright with a great group of Australian Under 19 players coming through, like top order batsman Jason Sangha and allrounders Jack Edwards and Param Uppal.
“The squad has been re-energised with a lot of good young players,” he said.
WATCH: Phil Jaques takes questions from the media for the first time as NSW Blues head coach.
While an emphasis on developing the youth within the squad will be a focus for Jaques, performances will be key.
“In any team that I’ve been involved in, it’s been about excellence … and having passion and pride for the cap,” he told journalists on Tuesday.
“I’m all about trying to bring together the nucleus of the good young players that we’ve got, but also mix them with the great senior players and leaders that we have here already.”
Since retiring from the game in 2012, Jaques has also spent two years as head coach of the Queensland Bulls between 2015 and 2017, and said honesty with the players was something he found very valuable.
“I think players like to know where they stand, good or bad.”
Jaques said the senior players such as Peter Nevill, Moises Henriques, Steve O’Keefe and Trent Copeland were vital to conveying his message to the younger cricketers within the group.
“It’s not a job that I can do on my own.”
“I’ll be utilising all the intelligence that we’ve got within our changeroom.”