Thank you for your comments on the new cricket structure at Derbyshire County Cricket Club, which are, as always, appreciated.
That's the case because they're pertinent and well thought out. I don't think for a minute that we will have a coach for each of the itemised disciplines - we couldn't afford it for one thing - but there will be 2-3 people who will have a remit that covers them all in turn.
I'm not going to start a hare around the park by suggesting how it would work in practice - I'm not up for the role, for one thing - but that will be something that the applicants will need to address in due course. There are, in Karl Krikken, Steve Stubbings, AJ Harris and Howard Dytham some very good people already in post. This exercise will identify if there are others - better, or more suitably qualified - who are out there.
Maybe there aren't, but I'd expect to see a number of applicants for the roles, as befits a key position at a county that is no longer simply making up the numbers at the bottom of county cricket. As 'Anon' points out below yesterday's post, no one can accuse the club's Board of standing still, their work ethic and desire to make things work being laudable.
Certainly they deserve better than some of the nonsense being spouted elsewhere, where the disrespect for highly motivated and talented people is unnecessary, petty and rather pathetic. As I alluded to in a comment earlier today, I think a couple of the correspondents on the Forum have 'revealed' who they are with recent comments. Axes to grind? I think so, but I'm on there only when I'm alerted to something by an e mail or comment, rather like a lot of other people, or so I'm told.
As for the new role, I could see a couple of erstwhile Derbyshire favourites being in the frame.
Chris Adams has had a sabbatical from the game after his departure from Surrey and would doubtless welcome a return to the county where he got his start. His experiences at The Oval weren't especially positive, but Adams did an outstanding job at Sussex as player, captain and coach. He will doubtless come under consideration should he choose to apply.
As would another former player, Graeme Welch. He has earned impressive comments for his work at Essex, before he moved to Edgbaston and a role at the county where he got his start in the game. Last winter he lost out to Dougie Brown for the top job there and may be keen to get a crack at the top role at a club where he remains a firm fan favourite.
We cannot discount the left-field applicant either. Few would have seen Jason Gillespie as the man for the top job at Yorkshire, but he came from Australia and did an outstanding job. There may be similar applicants for the Derbyshire post, which would make for an interesting short list and interview process.
Above all though, there's Karl Krikken. I feel for a lovely bloke who is passionate about his cricket at this time. I've been there myself, as I wrote last night and it is far from fun. Yet if we are genuine about seeing a Derbyshire side challenge for cricket's top honours, we need to ensure that the process and the personnel are spot on. For varying reasons we fell short last year, though confidence is high that a strong challenge can be mounted in 2014.
This exercise will ensure that whoever gets the job is the best man available and has the mandate to take the club forward over the next few years. That person will have the contacts, the track record and the high level experience to ensure that Derbyshire are not found wanting in their off-field preparation.
One final word - the club has put a relatively short lead time on the application and interview process. This will ensure that it is as painless as it can be for the current incumbents, while focusing the attention of would-be applicants and allowing the successful candidate to have a lengthy lead-in to the season.
Another example of why you simply have to ensure professional people are at the top. They think about such niceties.
It promises to be an interesting few weeks. Whatever happens, you can read my thoughts about it here.