Barwell to succeed Rouse as Edgbaston head groundsman

Warwickshire have appointed Gary Barwell, current assistant groundsman at Trent Bridge, as their new head groundsman.

Barwell, 39, will succeed the long-serving Steve Rouse, who is to retire after 17 years in charge of Edgbaston’s pitches at the end of the season.

Barwell beat off competition from one internal candidate and a current head groundsman at a non-Test match county to succeed Rouse who has described the Edgbaston job as “the best outside Lord’s”.

Barwell, who was previously assistant groundsman at Leicester’s Grace Road, served his apprenticeship with Nottinghamshire looking after their second ground at Lady Bay and he has impressed as assistant to head groundsman Steve Birks in recent years.

Warwickshire have yet to make a formal announcement confirming Barwell’s appointment but news of his departure from Trent Bridge has been confirmed to Nottinghamshire staff.

Barwell had a second interview at Edgbaston on September 6 in front of a panel that comprised Warwickshire’s director of cricket Ashley Giles, chairman Norman Gascoigne and chairman of cricket John Dodge.

The initial list of candidates is understood to have included two more current county head groundsmen, including one from a Test match county.

Rouse announced his retirement earlier this summer having first joined the groundstaff in 1966. He switched to playing and enjoyed a successful career as a left-arm seamer between 1970 and 1981 before injury forced him to retire.

Rouse succeeded Andy Atkinson as Edgbaston’s head groundsman in 1994 but he hopes to retain an involvement with the county as bowling coach for the junior sides.

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