Michael Klinger, the former Australian cricketer, has been appointed as the head coach of the Gujarat Giants ahead of the 2024 Women’s Premier League, the franchise announced on Tuesday.

The second season of the WPL will be played in Bengaluru and New Delhi, with the tournament starting on 23 February at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium. Klinger joins the squad with former Indian captain Mithali Raj, who is the mentor and advisor of the team, and Nooshin Al Khadeer, who has been the bowling coach since Season 1.

Klinger most recently served as an assistant coach for Sydney Thunder, a team that finished fourth in the Women’s Big Bash League. He also worked with Phoebe Litchfield, the newest recruit to the Thunder, having served as the head coach of Melbourne Renegades men’s team from 2019 to 2021.

Klinger attained legendary status in the Big Bash League as a player. He retired in 2019 and left as the league’s highest ever run scorer.

Speaking about his appointment as head coach, Klinger said, “The Gujarat Giants have a chance to do something special in the Season 2 of the Women’s Premier League. I am eagerly looking forward to working with cricketing legend in Mithali Raj, who has played a transformative role in women’s cricket in India. Together with the Adani Sportsline family, Mithali Raj, and the rest of the team, I hope to take the team to ultimate glory.”

The appointment of Klinger was also lauded by Raj, “Working with Michael will help bring out the best in the Gujarat Giants players. His expertise with the bat is also well-known and will surely benefit some of the younger members of our team. We look forward to having Klinger in the dressing room. We are sure of attaining success with him as head coach.”

The Giants will take the field against Mumbai Indians in their first match of the campaign on February 25.