Australian news August 23, 2010

Greg Chappell returns to selection table


Greg Chappell, Australia's first full-time selector, is in no hurry to discard any of Australia's senior players but is ready to make the tough decisions. Chappell will begin his second term with the panel over the next month after being appointed as the national talent manager on Monday.

Ricky Ponting, Michael Hussey and Simon Katich are all 35 and the finish of the Ashes and World Cup will require some significant long-term planning. As India coach, Chappell stood firm to end Sourav Ganguly's captaincy and he knows there will be difficult and unpopular choices.

"It comes with the territory," Chappell said at Australia's camp in Queensland. "Thankfully I'm not chairman of selectors, so maybe the toughest selections come down to the chairman [Andrew Hilditch]. I've been involved in selection on and off for Australia over the years, I've never been in the situation before when we've had to vote."

Chappell, who was interviewed last week, held a similar role until he stepped down in 1988 and became a commentator. Since then he has coached South Australia, India, Australia A and most recently at the Centre of Excellence. He will move from Brisbane, where he has been based since 2008, to Melbourne for the post, which also encompass talent identification and working with the states. As the panel's spokesman, he will also be the public face of the selectors.

The make-up of the rest of the four-man unit will be determined by Cricket Australia's board in October. Hilditch is contracted until next year's World Cup while one of David Boon, Jamie Cox and Merv Hughes is expected to depart to accommodate Chappell.

Michael Brown, Cricket Australia's operations manager, said he had not talked to Hilditch about his post-World Cup plans. "He's really excited about what he's doing and we've got a huge challenge ahead in the next eight months," he said. "We haven't had any discussions about his position beyond that. He's starting a business on his own, so he's a pretty busy person, but he's managed the two roles [previously]."

Hilditch and Chappell, whose playing careers just overlapped, have worked together since Chappell became involved with the Academy. "I have a great deal of respect for Andrew as a person and selector, I don't think there'll be too many issues there," Chappell said.

He enters a panel that has come under a lot of criticism for its choices over the past couple of years as the side has slipped from the No.1 Test ranking. It currently sits fourth and Chappell, 62, brings a youth-centred focus following his time with the Centre of Excellence.

"It gives me a pretty good feel for what's out there and what is required for the next couple of years," he said. "There's no rush to push anyone out the door. You have to earn the right to play for Australia, that's something the whole selection panel is conscious of, and will bear in mind going forward."

After retiring in 1983-84, Chappell was part of the selection panel that appointed Allan Border as captain following Kim Hughes' mid-series resignation, and he was involved in picking the 1987 World Cup-winning squad. He was also a key supporter of Ian Healy's rapid promotion in 1988.

"I enjoyed the role as a selector in the mid-80s to late 80s, I only really gave it away due to family and business commitments," he said. "We were reasonably successful coming out of a pretty lean time at that stage. I'd like to think I played some small part of that."

As a player he was peerless, scoring 7110 runs in 87 Tests, and captained Australia in 48 matches. He found coaching more difficult, especially during his two-year tenure with India, which ended after a first-round exit at the 2007 World Cup.

Peter English is the Australasia editor of Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • kailash on August 24, 2010, 5:16 GMT

    @Ankur Sengupta you gave a fitting reply man..

    Greg Chappel was a disaster as an indian coach..what talent did he recongnised ? He destroyed Pathan and made him a pinch hitter, ended ganguly captaincy and almost career..Ganguly is the guy who brought some aggression to our indian cricket and he played well after his comeback. The biggest mistake is questioning sachin commitment...what a joke it is! world cup 2007 1st round exit, Sachin lowest point of career(played very bad during chapel tenure), dropping ganguly,destroying pathan,sehwag dropped many times all in chappel tenure..! The only talent he mentioned is raina and all the present team yuvaraj/dhoni/sehwag/harbhajan are identified in ganguly tenure.

    And nothing is blown out of proportion in media ..Gary was never a subject in india and he is achieving good results as an indian coach..!

    I am sure he gonna end some aussie player careers but who cares !!

  • Sanjay on August 24, 2010, 2:54 GMT

    Yeah guys lets move on Indian team has so its abt time we fans do and lets forget the past and look at our own team rather than worrying abt australia

  • Milind on August 24, 2010, 2:51 GMT

    I guess he has indicated enough what he will be upto once he takes up the role...Ricki & Hussey start preparing your resume, soon you will be laid off...

  • Bharat on August 24, 2010, 1:09 GMT

    This is a good choice made by Australia. He was a good batsmen just as simple as that nothing much and now any one except australia has a chance to get the world cup.

  • clarrie on August 24, 2010, 1:06 GMT

    seems chappell ruffled some feathers in india. maybe he learnt from his mistakes. no doubt he was a great cricketer and an efective captain although not necessarily always a popularone. He may have learnt to brush up on his people skills since then. still i agree with ankur india are ranked number one in tests now so the after effects of chappells reign dont appear to have hurt them so bad. In terms of the aussies he is a selector for the national side not a coach. As his coaching is what seems to generate most critiscism and that is not his new role I cant see a problem. If having a full time selector gives him a chance to be present more often to assess players more accurately then great. Also in his era more young players got into the top side in their early 20's, himself included. If that is a direction he brings to the job I cant see the harm in it. If he has the strength to make a hard decision where swapping North for White, Ferguson or Smith 's concerned then good luck to him!

  • Dummy4 on August 24, 2010, 0:49 GMT

    CA have made another another backward step . When are they going to get someone fresh out of the game , and can relate to the current players . Old hands talking about days gone by are just getting a hand out . We all know how much business acumen Greg has . He is still going from job to job , and he's 65 or something like that. Anyway he has had his day and seeing how boring he is , and talks , then its time to be proactive. He should be like Hilditch , and both of them could take there dogs for a walk on the beach whilst a Test match is being played .

  • Swarup on August 23, 2010, 21:05 GMT

    To all those still complaining about Chappell's time as India coach - move on with your lives. Chappell and the rest of the world obviously has. He is good at identifying talented players so this is a sensible appointment by CA.

  • Vimalan on August 23, 2010, 20:38 GMT

    thank god, it'll be even more downfall for Aussis with Guru Greg at helms.

  • Dummy4 on August 23, 2010, 19:45 GMT

    Bad decision ACB. This is a huge step backward.This guy is going to spoil everything though nothing much left in Australia Team, the team we knnow since the departure of the greats like Glenn, Gilly, Hayden co. He was a good a player but I can not say a good captain because of the qulaity of good and focussed players Australia has produced since 3 decades but certainly not a coach. anyway wait for 2 years.

  • Anthony on August 23, 2010, 17:47 GMT

    If his job involves tallent spotting, why is it in Melbourne? New South Wales on play there once a year.

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