Dawson leaves after six years at Bristol during which club won Royal London Cup and Championship promotion
Ian Harvey will become Gloucestershire’s interim head coach at the end of the month, when Richard Dawson leaves the club following his appointment as the ECB’s elite performance pathway coach.
Harvey, the former Australia allrounder, played 168 times for Gloucestershire across formats between 1999 and 2006, and has been the club’s assistant coach since Dawson’s appointment as head coach ahead of the 2015 season.
Dawson has worked regularly with England squads over the past two years, leading the England Lions’ tour to Australia in early 2020 and working with England’s spinners on a camp in Mumbai in late 2019 and during the Test series against West Indies last summer.
During his tenure at Gloucestershire, Dawson oversaw the club’s triumph in the 2015 Royal London Cup, when they beat Surrey at Lord’s, and their promotion to Division One of the County Championship in 2019. While they have never gone past the semi-final stage, they have also been among the most consistent counties in the T20 Blast: only Nottinghamshire have won more games than them over the last six seasons.
“It has been a huge privilege to have been the head coach of Gloucestershire since 2015,” Dawson said. “There were highs and lows on the pitch but winning the Royal London One-Day Cup in 2015 and gaining promotion to Division One of the County Championship in 2019 were highlights on the pitch, as was seeing a Gloucestershire player [James Bracey] breaking into the England set-up last year.
“As a playing and coaching unit, we have faced a lot of challenges off the field, and I’m proud of the togetherness of this squad, who have been incredibly supportive of one another through good and bad times. I’m confident the group is in a strong place with a healthy mix of experience and youth to compete in all formats of the game.”
Will Brown, the club’s chief executive, said: “Richard has been a fantastic coach to work with from the outset engendering a belief and excitement that has filtered into all areas of the club. His dedication to building a positive and winning culture has been evident throughout his time in Bristol and the impact he made will be felt long after he is gone.
“Richard has taken huge pride in his role as head coach, working tirelessly to get the best out of himself and the players. His likeable easy-going personality, coupled with his commitment to Gloucestershire, garnered respect from the playing squad and meant he had a great rapport with the wider club staff.”
Dawson will continue to oversee pre-season preparations until the end of the month, when Harvey will take over with the support of the club’s existing coaching staff, as well as Matt Windows (chairman of cricket) and David Graveney (an executive board member).
A Gloucestershire statement said: “The club will now begin a review of its cricketing requirements in order to continue and grow ahead of a formal recruitment process later in the year.”
The raft of coaching appointments announced by the ECB on Monday also had ramifications further down the M5, with Marcus Trescothick’s association with Somerset coming to an end after nearly three decades.
Trescothick, who made his Somerset debut in 1993, retired at the end of the 2019 season to become Somerset’s assistant coach, and has now been appointed as the ECB’s elite batting coach. In a Somerset press release, he set his sights on returning as head coach in the future.
“Although I’m leaving, I’m still going to be around the place to come in and see some of the batters that Somerset have,” Trescothick said. “Not being around the ground as much as I normally am is certainly going to be a bit different.
“I want to further my career so that I can eventually become a head coach at a domestic county with the hope of moving into international cricket somewhere down the line. To do that I need to branch out and look at different environments in order to get a better understanding of certain things, and this will certainly give me the opportunity to do that. Hopefully, this might be the stepping stone for me to one day come back and look after the team here.”
Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets at @mroller98