GARY Kirsten, the former star Proteas batsman who coached India to an ICC World Cup crown and the number one ranking in test cricket, has been appointed head coach of South Africa’s national cricket team.
“We are delighted to welcome Gary back as part of the CSA family,” Cricket South Africa (CSA) CEO Gerald Majola said after Kirsten’s recent appointment.
“We have been through an exhaustive but rewarding process to find the best possible candidate for the job, and we are totally confident that we have done just that.
“Gary’s credentials and cricketing experiences speak for themselves, and the board of CSA is confident that he will lead the Proteas to new heights in all formats of the game,” Majola said.
Kirsten said he felt greatly honoured to be selected for this important position.
“Having filled the same position with the Indian national team for the past three years, I believe this is a natural progression as far as my coaching career is concerned.”
“My coaching philosophy will not be any different than it was for the Indian team,” Kirsten added. “I always endeavour to influence players in a positive way and give them options so that they can grow both as cricketers and as people.”
Kirsten, 43, had a distinguished career as a player both for Western Province and the Proteas. He was the first South African to reach the milestones of 100 test caps, 7 000 Test runs and 20 test centuries and, although these marks have subsequently been passed by Jacques Kallis, he set the original benchmark for others to follow.
He was also the first South African since the country’s re-emergence after apartheid to score a century in both innings of a test match, and he stood in for an injured Hansie Cronje as captain of the Proteas against Pakistan in 1998.
Kirsten meanwhile named Russell Domingo and Allan Donald as his assistants while Abe de Villiers and Hashim Amla were named captain and deputy respectively for the Proteas’ T20 ODI. Graeme Smith remain the test captain with De Villiers as his deputy. The SA.info