Friday, July 19, 2013

Top job for local cricketer

Scott McNaughton bowling in
the UK in 2007.
FORMER Magra resident Scott McNaughton is now living his dream job. Having been involved with cricket all his life, the 28-year-old has landed the coaching position of a lifetime. And it's not just any coaching job - it's the top job in Japan! Titled high performance and pathways manager, Scott's job entails being the national coach of the men's and women's teams and also coaching and creating pathways for junior cricketers.

"I was so rapt when I got the news," Scott in an interview via Skype. "I saw the position advertised before Christmas, threw my hat in the ring, got the job mid-March and started here at the end of April. Based in the city of Sano, Scott describes the cricket grounds in Japan as very similar to that of the rocky Queenstown ground here in Tasmania. "They can be a bit on the hard side and all pitches are synthetic," he said.

Believe it or not cricket has been played in Japan since 1863 and as a celebration of their 150-year milestone, Scott and the country's men's and women's teams travelled to the UK where they played matches against English teams on the famous Lord's ground. Learning the Japanese language has been one of the challenges that have come with the job, but Scott says he is really enjoying the role and is looking forward to the next two years in his adopted country.

Gaining such a position requires a lot of experience and qualifications and Scott has it all. Prior to leaving for Japan he was employed by Cricket Tasmania from 2007 where he held many positions including game development officer and women's development officer, as well as helping to form the Tasmanian women's team, The Roar, and being appointed assistant coach. In 2011-12 he transferred to Sheffield and was the regional cricket manager on the North-West Coast.

But it hasn't just been on the administration side that this cricket fanatic has excelled. His playing days began as a strapping teenager with the Molesworth and Eagles cricket clubs. From 2001-02 to 2005-06 he played with TCA club South Hobart Sandy Bay, winning a second grade premiership. In 2006-07 and 2007-08 he played with Glenorchy and also coached their Under 15 and Under 18 teams. During the off-seasons he travelled to England and played during their summer in 2006 and 2007.

From the 2008-09 season until 2012-13 Scott played with the Lindisfarne Cricket Club, and for the last two seasons was its senior coach, winning the Premier and Statewide Twenty20 premierships this season just gone. Coaching became a real passion for McNaughton who holds a level three accreditation resulting in him being appointed as coach of the state team for four years.

Back home, Scott's parents Michael and Heather couldn't be more happier for their son "It was such a great moment when we heard that Scott had got the job," mum Heather said. Scott's dad Michael who played cricket for 25 years said he and Scott had played together on several occasions over the years and in one match playing with Sandy Bay against Clarence, Mick filled in making 85 runs while Scott took 6 for 20-odd and Sandy Bay got over the line! Michael said his proudest moment in Scott's early years was watching him make a century for the Eagles at Tynwald Park on his 16th birthday.

Come December, which is during Japan's winter, Scott will return home to marry his fiancée Haley in January. Well done Scott, you have done Tassie and the Derwent Valley as well. Maybe one day we will see you coaching the Tassie Tigers or even the Australian team!

Scott with Japanese cricket team captain Tatsuro Chino in the UK.

Scott with some of the Japanese women's team members.

1 comment:

  1. Great stuff for a local lad - congrats.