Alex Hartley is a well-known figure in the cricketing world. The former England spinner, who retired from all forms of cricket in August 2023, has had a diverse career, including being a World Cup winner, a commentator, co-host of the No Balls Podcast with Kate Cross, and an avid fan of ice cream. Recently, Hartley took on a new role as the assistant spin bowling coach for Multan Sultans, a Pakistan Super League franchise, while also serving as a commentator for the ongoing ODI World Cup in India. In an interview, she shared her thoughts on her new coaching role, working with the legendary spin bowling coach Saqlain Mushtaq, her experiences as a commentator, and more. Here are some key excerpts from her interview:
On being named as the assistant spin coach of Multan Sultans:
Alex Hartley expressed her excitement and gratitude for the opportunity. She sees it as a chance to change perceptions of women in sports, particularly in Pakistan. She looks forward to working with the coaching staff and believes it will be a brilliant experience.
On her role and working alongside Saqlain:
She described her role as laying the foundation for the bowlers to consistently perform their skills. She also emphasized the opportunity to learn from Saqlain Mushtaq, a world-class player and coach, and expressed her eagerness to absorb as much coaching knowledge as possible.
On the significance of women taking up coaching roles with men’s teams:
Alex Hartley believes that women can and should take on coaching roles in men’s cricket. She highlights the need to establish strong fundamentals for spinners and sees her role in Pakistan as contributing to this process.
On her time in India as a commentator for the ODI World Cup:
Alex expressed her love for India and her excitement about exploring different places in the country, including the picturesque Dharamsala. She enjoys the freedom of being a full-time commentator post-retirement, with the flexibility to relax and savor the local cuisine.
On her experience as a full-time commentator:
She described the differences in her life post-retirement, emphasizing the lack of pressure and the freedom to enjoy her time without the constraints of a professional cricketer’s schedule.
Meeting fans of the No Balls Podcast in Chennai:
Alex was pleasantly surprised by the response of fans in Chennai, who recognized her from the No Balls Podcast, which she co-hosts with Kate Cross. She appreciated the reach and impact they have as cricketers and podcast hosts.
Hectic schedule for commentators and the cities visited:
Alex listed the cities she had visited during the ODI World Cup, which included Delhi, Hyderabad, Chennai, Dharamsala, and Palampur. She mentioned that the schedule had been hectic, but she was adjusting to the pace of her new job as a commentator.
In summary, Alex Hartley is thrilled about her role as the assistant spin bowling coach for Multan Sultans and her experiences as a commentator in India. She sees this as an opportunity to learn and contribute to the development of cricket in different capacities.