New Zealand news July 19, 2013

John Buchanan to leave New Zealand cricket

ESPNcricinfo staff

Former Australia coach John Buchanan has left his job as New Zealand's director of cricket after overseeing a turbulent two years. The announcement of Buchanan's departure came within minutes of NZC revealing its new selection procedure, where the national team coach will have final say over the picking of teams.

A NZC press release said Buchanan, whose contract ran till the 2015 World Cup, has moved out of the influential role "due to family circumstances", and that he would be moving back to Australia.

Buchanan's exit comes days after one of his controversial appointments, former Australia lawn bowls manager Kim Littlejohn, said he wouldn't be applying for an extension to his contract as national selector, which ends in September.

"Buchanan, who took up the role at NZC in May 2011, is disappointed to be leaving NZC at this time as he has enjoyed his work there. However, due to family circumstances, he has decided to return to Australia," the NZC release said. "Buchanan's return to Australia will give him the opportunity to explore other roles and consultancies with his business, Buchanan Success Coaching."

When he was appointed to the newly created role of director of cricket, Buchanan was told to employ "consistent coaching strategies and oversee the entire high-performance programme". His unconventional methods, including the recruitment of Littlejohn - a man with little cricket experience - as national selection manager, and the heavy reliance on statistics to guide team selections, were not to everyone's liking.

A year after Buchanan's appointment, the national coach John Wright stood down, saying his differences with Buchanan played a part in the decision. Seven months ago, Buchanan also admitted to a difficult relationship with NZC chief executive David White, mainly due to the controversial axing of Ross Taylor as captain. Around that time, the team was ranked below Bangladesh in ODIs, and were a lowly eighth in Tests and Twenty20s.

This was Buchanan's first major job in international cricket after eight years as Australia's coach, during which he oversaw a golden run including three World Cup victories and a dominant Test side.

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  • Rakitha on July 26, 2013, 9:25 GMT

    one man cannot be responsible for whats happened to NZC in the last two years. I think he's done a great job.

  • Dummy4 on July 21, 2013, 22:32 GMT

    From an Australian point of view Buchanan is rubbish. He inherited the best Australian team ever and was given guaranteed success by default. Every other team he has been involved with since then has performed terribly.

  • Balaji on July 20, 2013, 2:39 GMT

    I think Buchanan is overrated. He was lucky to inherit a great Aussie team which had been moulded by Simpson and Geoff Marsh. He was a pathetic failure with KKR in the IPL.

  • Steve on July 19, 2013, 16:57 GMT

    Thank goodness NZ now have chance to progress forward! They should get either an SA or Indian coach next time. With a small talent pool to chose from, coaches and NZ fans need patience to find and groom a set of players that can play for 6-10 yrs into the future.

  • Vikram on July 19, 2013, 15:26 GMT

    Whether he oversee two turbulent years or caused two turbulent years is debatable.

  • Dummy4 on July 19, 2013, 12:37 GMT

    John Buchanan coached KKR also. He has his own way of doing things. He is shrewed & adament. Tough gentleman, his own ways. Never get convinced. The main thing is the differences. Everyone has good & bad times. Let us face it. Finally a bright light will come @ the end. John Buchanan means J-Jolly O-orderly H-Honesty N-Naughty B-Beauty U-Utility C-Charity H-Honourary A-Amnesty N-Nicely A-Army N-Noisely. Wish you all the best for the future years to come.

  • Jon on July 19, 2013, 12:22 GMT

    @ Tony Hughes - sounds a lot like Robbie Deans.

  • Dummy4 on July 19, 2013, 11:51 GMT

    Wright is right for NZ. Is there any chance of NZ getting him back?

  • Dummy4 on July 19, 2013, 11:50 GMT

    @Cyril_Knight. Didn't know, Buchanan's family is based in Surrey County, England! That is news! ( I am inferring from the statement that he is quitting the NZ job, for 'family reasons'! )

  • Dummy4 on July 19, 2013, 11:23 GMT

    In fairness, the odds were kind of stacked against him from the start. Outsider, somewhat of a maverick in terms of his approach and, probably the toughest thing - he didn't have a lot to work with in terms of ability.

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