FORMER Ireland international Ted Williamson has been appointed as head coach to the Leinster Lightning Inter-Provincial team for 2015, taking over the reins from Trent Johnston.

It’s another step on the coaching ladder for Williamson who is an ECB Level 3 Coach and currently part of the ECB Level 4 programme, while he is also an ECB Level 3 Accredited Tutor, Mentor and Assessor.

Currently working as assistant coach to the Ireland Under 19 squad who are preparing for an ICC U19 World Cup Qualifier in 2015, he served as head coach of the Ireland Under 17 sides between 2010 and 2014 who won three of the last four ICC European Challenge Series titles.

Williamson was the assistant coach to the Lightning during the side’s successful 2014 season which saw them claim both the Newstalk Inter-Provincial Championship and Cup titles and during this time assisted with the Ireland EPP Squad.

As a player Williamson is capped at Ireland U19, U21, U23, A levels with his sole senior cap coming against the MCC at Lurgan in 1998. The youngest player to score a century for Munster in the old Guinness Cup, Williamson played for his province with distinction for many years and also represented the Southern XI in the previous inter-provincial format.

Williamson is looking forward to a challenging year ahead for the Lightning: “I'm delighted to be coming on board with what is already a very accomplished provincial set up on and off the pitch. Really good teams have long periods of sustained success because they are continually evolving and I feel that if we can identify areas where we can add to the good work already been done then increased levels of performances will be evident for all to see.”

Commenting on the appointment, Cricket Ireland Performance Director Richard Holdsworth said: “We had some strong local candidates for this role which is really encouraging, and they will all be engaged in other Cricket Ireland programmes this year. Ted however stood out and has grown as a coach in recent years, having success with the Ireland Under 17 team and now preparing our Under 19 team for their ICC World Cup qualifier this summer. We feel Ted’s player-centred approach and good understanding of people will help get the best out of the Leinster Lighting players and continue their success.”

The 2015 Inter-Provincial series gets underway on 1st of May when Williamson’s first assignment will be a T20 encounter away to the Northern Knights.