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Johnston nets plum role as Knights prepare for new Irish era

By Ian Callender

Published 25/10/2016

Simon Johnston
Simon Johnston

Simon Johnston will take the Northern Knights into the new era of first class cricket in Ireland after being appointed Head Coach on a one-year contract.

Johnston, currently coach of Waringstown and the Ireland Under-15s, was Cricket Ireland Coach of the Year in 2014 and 2015, last year leading the Villagers to the double of Premier League champions and Irish Cup winners, while the Irish youngsters won back-to-back European titles.

It has yet to be determined if he will continue in these roles, with his position at Waringstown likely to be most vulnerable due to the increased and high-profile fixture list across three formats for the Knights; Munster are expected to be a fourth team in next year's Twenty20 tournament.

While Johnston says he is "delighted to be appointed to a role which I see as both a great honour and a great challenge, particularly given the enhanced status of next year's competition", it is a huge disappointment for Eugene Moleon who has put in so much work in the last four years in the role.

However, his contract was up and he was only one of five applicants, but NCU chairman Alan Waite - who excused himself from the interviewing panel - was keen to pay tribute to Moleon, saying: "We would like to thank Eugene for his great efforts over the last four years and hope he will remain as part of the NCU's player development programmes."

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