Stephen Fleming © Getty Images
Stephen Fleming © Getty Images

In his 15-year career, Stephen Fleming was renowned for his tactical acumen, which is why he is regarded as one of New Zealand’s most successful captains. During this time frame, Fleming has played just 5 T20Is. Fleming led New Zealand in all those matches and under him, they have won 2, lost 2 and one ended in draw. Despite of not much experience in the format, Fleming has become a sought-after coaches in the shortest format today.

After retiring from international cricket in 2008, Fleming was bought by IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings (CSK) the same year. In 2009, he was appointed as CSK coach and under him the team won IPL 2010, CL T20 2010, IPL 2011 and CLT20 2014. After CSK was banned for two years in 2015, Fleming was appointed as Melbourne Stars coach in BBL. He also coached IPL franchise Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) until 2017.

Now, Fleming has expressed the desire to take over New Zealand’s T20I coaching duties. Fleming wishes to pass on his experience to the New Zealand side. Simon Doull, former New Zealand cricketer turned commentator, had raised the topic of having a separate coach for T20Is and easing the responsibilities off Mike Hesson. Doull also picked up the topic with Hesson’s contract ending after 2019 World Cup. New Zealand would need an experienced figure ahead of the 2020 T20 World Cup.

Speaking to Glen Larmer on Trackside Radio on Thursday morning, Fleming said: “I would and it’s based on my passion and love for New Zealand cricket. At some stage there will hopefully be an opportunity to contribute some of that IP.  I’ve got a very good relationship with Craig McMillan (New Zealand batting coach) and spend a lot of time talking to him about where the game is going and what he sees. So I enjoy passing on that knowledge and it comes back to wanting the New Zealand team to be strong.”

“I enjoy going away and having a strong New Zealand team performing well around the world, it helps my job and I enjoy getting the New Zealand players in the sides that I’ve got. At some stage, who knows, and I think Daniel [Vettori] would be the same. I’d love to help, but I certainly appreciate and admire the work Mike has done,” he added.

On easing off pressure from Hesson: “If you can have consistently in your management and leaders all of the way through, then that’s a bonus. One of my concerns would be the workload on Mike Hesson. You’ve got to think for a modern day coach these days, to be spending 250-300 days away, or involved in the job, travelling and hotels and being away from the family, that’s unsustainable. So Simon makes some good points there about looking after your coaches and maybe T20 is one form of the game where there’s an opportunity for the head coach to have some time off.”

Trent Boult, too, was excited with the prospect of having Fleming at the helm, “It’s pretty hard to see where the game’s going to go and it might move in that direction where specialist coaches come in for different formats. To hear someone like that, a really respected New Zealand cricketer and a good coach, to say he could be interested is very exciting. In terms of the team now, we’re going well and enjoying all the formats and Mike is doing a great job. It is exciting to potentially see what could happen in the future but I’m pretty happy at the moment.”