Noffke has accepted a new three-year deal from next season that will cover his role as Head of Female Performance, including the dual coaching roles for the Queensland Fire and WBBL Brisbane Heat.
Queensland Cricket CEO Terry Svenson said the opportunity to renew the contract of the dual championship coach had been high on the list of strategic priorities.
“Ash has done a wonderful job so far for the Fire and the Heat and we were very keen to bed that down to enable us to follow a clear development and playing strategy over the next few years,’’ he said.
“On the eve of another WBBL campaign, it was timely to finalise his contract extension ahead of the competition starting in a few weeks,’’ Svenson said.
Heat captain Jess Jonassen said the retention of Noffke was welcome news for the Queensland and Brisbane playing group.
“Ash is very much a players’ coach, in that he looks at every individual in the group and works on how best to improve them, as players and as people,’’ she said.
“He’s not afraid to challenge us as a group or as individuals but there is always the underlying knowledge that he is looking to help make us better.
“As captain, I know he backs my decision-making, and he knows that I am always open to look at what we are doing and if there is a better way, work out how to implement it successfully for the group.”
Noffke took over as Heat and Fire coach in 2019 and was at the helm when the Heat won the WBBL title for the second time in a row in 2019-20 and again last season when Queensland won its inaugural Women’s National Cricket League title.
The former Queensland paceman said he was privileged to be asked to continue coaching the Fire and the Heat.
“There is incredible talent coming through the ranks in Queensland and that bodes really well for the future, especially when you consider the rapid growth in girls’ cricket around the State,’’ he said.
“It is very heartening to know that the Fire and the Heat teams are so influential in growing the game as role models, and frankly, very humbling to be involved with that."
“I love the idea of working with our younger group and helping them to achieve their dreams.”
“We are fortunate to have a great group of players, and the experience that the likes of Jess (Jonassen), Georgia Redmayne, Laura Kimmince and Grace Harris brings means that the young players we are bringing through will have some great opportunities to further develop their game.”
“We’re excited about the WBBL and then the WNCL after that with this group. There will be lots of opportunities ahead and I’m confident we’re ready to take advantage of them,” he said.
The Sunshine Coast product played 71 Sheffield Shield matches for Queensland, taking 252 wickets, and scoring two centuries, as well as representing Australia at One Day and T20 International level.
He previously worked with the Queensland Bulls as part of their support staff under coaches Darren Lehmann and Phil Jaques and was bowling coach when the Brisbane Heat won the KFC Big Bash League title in BBL|02. He was also an assistant coach with the Australian Women’s team in 2018.
The WBBL Heat has announced the following signings for WBBL|07: Jess Jonassen (c), Anneke Bosch (int), Nadine de Klerk (Int), Grace Harris, Ellie Johnston, Laura Kimmince, Mikayla Hinkley, Charli Knott, Georgia Prestwidge, Georgia Redmayne, Courtney Sippel, Georgia Voll.
The Heat will join all WBBL teams in Tasmania for the start of the competition, with matches to be played in Hobart and Launceston.
Brisbane will play seven games in Tasmania, with two games in Hobart and five in Launceston. It is expected the competition will then continue as scheduled once the opening block of games in Tasmania is completed.
The Heat will open their season with two games against the Perth Scorchers at Blundstone Arena on October 17 and 19 before taking on the Melbourne Stars (Oct 23), Adelaide Strikers (Oct 24), Hobart Hurricanes (Oct 26 and Oct 30) and the Stars (Oct 31) in Launceston.