Pocknall appointed new Firebirds head coach

Glenn Pocknall has been appointed as the new Wellington Firebirds head coach on a three-year term.

The current Firebirds assistant coach will take the reins after Bruce Edgar announced he would step down from the role at the end of the season.

The appointment completes the successful transition through the Cricket Wellington coaching pathway programme of Pocknall who began his coaching career at the age of 22 with the Wellington under 15 team.

From there he progressed through the Wellington age-group representative teams into the provincial A programmes, and eventually into the Firebirds programme.

“It was one of my goals when I started with the age group teams 18 years ago to be in this position, so to achieve it and come through the pathway and be the coach of one of the top provincial teams in the country is really rewarding,” said Pocknall.

“I think I’ll bring my own creativity to the role, I’ve sat in behind and seen other coaches in this role and during that time I’ve had a lot of ideas that I now have the opportunity to implement that will hopefully take this team to the next level.”

A born-and-bred Wellingtonian, Pocknall has been part of the Firebirds programme for the past seven years and took on the lead coaching role in their successful Ford Trophy campaign this summer.

He is an NZC Level 3 accredited coach, holds a certificate in business, specialising in leadership, and is currently part of the eleventh intake of coaches on the High Performance Sport New Zealand coach accelerator programme; a coaching programme completed by former and current BLACKCAPS coaches Mike Hesson and Gary Stead.

Pocknall was unanimously backed for the role by the Firebirds players and coaching staff and said he was looking forward to developing the mix of experience and youth in the current Firebirds’ roster.

“We’ve got a good balance of experience and youth in the squad which is a really exciting mix because those more experienced guys can really inspire those younger players to improve every day and become the future of Wellington cricket.

“Having that great mix gives us an awesome opportunity to push forward as an association, not just over the next year, but potentially over the next five to ten years which is really exciting.”

Cricket Wellington CEO Cam Mitchell said Pocknall was a great fit for the role and the ideal successor to Edgar.

“Glenn is a modern coach and a great leader, and his appointment will ensure a smooth transition of the Firebirds culture that Glenn and Bruce have worked so hard to develop over the past few years.

“He epitomises what we are at Cricket Wellington – growth mindset, professional, hardworking – his appointment further demonstrates our focus on developing our people.”

Pocknall will complete his role as assistant coach alongside Bruce Edgar for the Firebirds’ final two Plunket Shield matches of the summer before officially beginning his role as head coach on June 1.