The syndicate, which comprises of Somerset County Cricket Club, Gloucestershire County Cricket Club and the University of Exeter, have announced the appointment of Lisa Pagett as General Manager and Caroline Foster as Head Coach.
Lisa Pagett has spent the last decade working extensively in performance cricket, most recently as Head Coach of the England Women’s Development Programme. As well as a number of other important roles within the sport in the region she has also been the Head Coach of Gloucestershire Women and a team coach in the England Women’s Development Under 19 programme. Her dedication to the Women’s game has also been recognised at a national level after she was voted runner up in the National ECB Sky Sports ‘Coach of the Year Award’ in 2013.
Following her appointment to the role, which will also include an Assistant Coach element, Lisa said: “The game has been a passion of mine from a very early age. I feel privileged to have played 12 seasons of County cricket for Somerset, 14 seasons of Premier League cricket for Bath CC, captained the ECB South West Under 19 team and spent 3 years as part of the England Development squad. Having made the transition to indoor cricket I was also lucky enough to play for England in two World Cups.
“The possibility of being part of such a significant development in the women and girl’s game is one that energises and excites me, especially in the region I have both worked and played cricket in and I can’t wait to get started.”
Former England International and World Cup winner Caroline Foster (née Atkins) won over 50 ODI caps for her Country and led Somerset to two cup finals as Head Coach. She has been the Assistant and Head Coach of the England Women’s Development Programmes at both Under 19 and Under 15 level and was also the Somerset Cricket Board Women and Girl’s Head Coach between 2012 and 2014.
After her position was confirmed Caroline said: “I am passionate about the women’s game and I am delighted to have been chosen for this really exciting opportunity. The women’s game continues to grow at pace and I believe my biggest impact on the sport is ahead of me. I am relishing the opportunity to shape the identity of the South West team and share in the responsibility of keeping the women’s game moving forward across the West Country.”
Gloucestershire CEO, Will Brown said: “We were delighted with the amount of interest and quality of applications we received and a huge thank you to all those who expressed an interest. Caroline and Lisa are both exceptional coaches with outstanding experience across Women and Girl’s Cricket from the playground to the test arena and are both itching to get started. Hopefully with them in place and with strong support and playing staff alongside them we can drive immediate success on the pitch for the South West Women’s Cricket Super League team.”
The Women’s Cricket Super League will begin in the summer with six teams competing in a Twenty20 event. The key aims of the Women’s Cricket Super League include the development of ever higher standards for the England Women’s team with greater competition for places, alongside inspiring more women and girls to play cricket at all levels. It will offer new opportunities, a new narrative for the game and new role models, as well as a network of host clubs linked to their communities.