Former Sussex player and coach Carl Hopkinson has been appointed the ECB’s new lead fielding coach.

Hopkinson, a County Championship winner with Sussex in 2006 who has spent the last seven years on the coaching staff at Hove specialising in fielding, will start work in April, filling the vacancy left by Chris Taylor’s return to Surrey as fielding consultant.

ECB performance director David Parsons said: “This is an important role, working with the most talented players on the Men’s International Pathway and the England team, and also alongside the county network to raise the standards of fielding across the game.

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“Carl is a perfect fit for that, given his extensive experience of the county game, and the respect he has gained through his work with Sussex. He is an excellent coach, is passionate and committed about fielding, and has developed an outstanding technical knowledge.

“He has worked on the Pathway previously on Lions and Young Lions programmes, and led the delivery of the Level 4 Fielding Module. I am confident that his appointment will be welcomed by players and counties alike.”

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Hopkinson said: “I’m honoured to have been given this fantastic opportunity to not only develop the fielding of English cricketers within the ECB pathway, but to also work closely with counties to help improve the overall standard of fielding throughout the country.

“I’d like to thank Sussex Cricket for their years of support both as a player and a coach. The development opportunities given to me by the club have been outstanding and have allowed me to take this next step in my career.”