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December 22, 2011
Eric Simons, India's bowling coach, has been appointed as the head coach of the Delhi Daredevils for the 2012 season of the Indian Premier League. Simons, who was previously Delhi's assistant coach, replaced the Australian Greg Shipperd. TA Sekhar will return to a mentoring role with Delhi after spending the previous two seasons at Mumbai Indians.
"It is an honour and a wonderful challenge going into the new season. The IPL is a dynamic and exciting place for any cricketer to be involved in at the moment," Simons said. "To have the trust and confidence shown in me as coach is something I am grateful for."
Simons represented South Africa in 23 ODIs between 1994 and 1995, and played the last of his 123 first-class games for Western Province in 1999. Simons coached Western Province before being appointed the South Africa coach in September 2002, a role he had until October 2004. He is presently India's bowling coach, a responsibility he took up after Gary Kirsten became India's coach in 2008.
"I am sure that Simons taking over as head coach and Sekhar's return as mentor will help the team [Delhi] overcome the disappointments of last season and become most competitive again," Kiran K Grandhi, GMR Sports' business chairman, said. GMR is the company that owns the Delhi franchise.
Virender Sehwag, the Delhi captain, also endorsed Simons' appointment. "Eric has done a good job as bowling coach and now he can do that as the head coach. He can make a difference, as he has been with the team for a couple of years," Sehwag said. "If someone else had come in [as coach], he would have to had to start from the scratch. It is good Eric has taken over and I am hoping he will do a good job."
Delhi finished bottom of the league in the 2011 season of the IPL, winning only four out of 14 matches.
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