Australia mentor Ben Sawyer to be Birmingham Women's Team Head Coach for The Hundred

Ben Sawyer, coach of the Sydney Sixers, has been appointed Birmingham Women's team coach for The Hundred Getty Images

Ben Sawyer, a man Ellyse Perry credited with helping Australia to a crushing victory over England in this year's Women's Ashes, has been appointed head coach of the Birmingham Women's team for The Hundred.

Sawyer, who has led Sydney Sixers to all four WBBL finals and back-to-back titles in 2016-17 and 2017-18, is also assistant coach and a fast bowling specialist for the Australia Women's team, who defeated England 12-2 in the Ashes, losing onlty the tour-ending T20I.

"Speaking to players around the world, The Hundred is a competition that they're all talking about and want to get involved in," Sawyer said. "I'm very excited to be appointed as Head Coach of the Birmingham Women's team and I'm looking forward to assembling a team that can combine global superstars with a lot of the local talent here in the West Midlands that has performed so well in the recent county women's T20."

Perry - who made 378 runs and took 15 wickets, averaging 94.50 with the bat and 12.86 with the ball across all three formats, to be named Player of the 2019 Women's Ashes - has worked with Sawyer in both the Sixers and Australia set-ups. She said he had been a huge help to Australia's bowlers since he joined the national team a year ago.

"I've been really fortunate to work with Ben Sawyer for a number of years now and we just always try to keep developing and progressing things as a bowling unit," Perry told ESPNcricinfo in July.

Craig Flindall, Chief Operating Officer at Warwickshire CCC, said: "Ben boasts outstanding credentials as a head coach in the women's game, with the best win percentage of any coach operating in international T20s, the Kia Super League and the WBBL.

"He's widely respected by players and fellow coaches around the world and he was the standout candidate throughout the comprehensive recruitment process that we undertook. We're thrilled to welcome him as our Head Coach of the Birmingham team."

The Hundred will launch in July next year with the men's and women's tournaments to run concurrently over a five-week period involving eight city-based clubs from Manchester, Leeds, Nottingham, Birmingham, Cardiff, Southampton and two in London (Lord's and the Oval).

The men's competition will hold a player draft on October 20, while the women's teams will be selected in two stages, led by their respective head coaches. During stage one, which runs until the end of September, each team is obliged to sign two players from the current England Women's central contract list. During stage two, from October 1 until May 30 next year, each team will sign their remaining 13 players from three different player pools; remaining England Women's centrally contracted players, overseas players and domestic players.Teams can sign a maximum of one further England women's centrally contracted player during stage two and can sign a maximum of three overseas players.