An increased player intake was announced into Australiaâ€™s revamped cricket academy here on Friday.
The Adelaide-based academy named 24 full-time residential scholarships, up from last yearâ€™s intake of 14. For the first time this year, the academy will train for two six-week stints in cricketâ€™s off-season, replacing the traditional 30-week course.
The Australian academy, which has produced international stars, Shane Warne, Ricky Ponting, Adam Gilchrist, Justin Langer and Brett Lee, aims to bridge the gap between youth programs and first-class international cricket.
New head coach Bennett King, who has replaced Rod Marsh, said changes to the academy, would help achieve its aim. â€œI probably think it is better than having less,â€ King told reporters here on Friday.
â€œIt gives me the opportunity to play skills between our group, to play games within our group and to really start testing some of the skill acquisition work that we do and the remediation that we do with players in a game environment.â€
King said playing in more overseas tours was still being considered, as was moving the academy away from Adelaide. Marsh left the Australian academy to take over its English counterpart.