Dave Currie appointed team manager
Dave Currie, the chef de mission for New Zealand's Olympic and Commonwealth Games teams, has been appointed as the manager of the country's cricket team. Currie has been given a three-year term starting from the home series against India starting later this month, but will be released to lead New Zealand's contingents at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi and the 2012 London Olympics.
Currie succeeds Lindsay Crocker, whose five-year term ends with the Twenty20 international against Australia in Sydney on February 15. "We were committed to looking for the very best candidate around and talked to a number of people from a lot of different areas," Justin Vaughan, the New Zealand Cricket (NZC) chief executive, told the Herald on Sunday. "Dave's track record of success and his understanding of a high-performance sporting environment really stood out. He's got a lot of experience but he can also bring in some new things to the Black Caps and New Zealand Cricket from his time with the Commonwealth and Olympic Games."
Currie was New Zealand's chef de mission at the 2002 and 2006 Commonwealth Games and 2004 and 2008 Olympics. Vaughan said a temporary manager would be appointed for New Zealand's tour of Bangladesh in October 2010, when Currie will be in Delhi with the Commonwealth team.
Currie, however, said his "greater commitment" will be with the New Zealand side, a job he described as his "primary role". "It's not something I expected or sought but I'm excited and honoured to have a chance to work with an impressive group of young men," Currie said. "You get the sense that the way they have played over the last couple of months there's some real steel there.
"It's going to be different but the principles are the same. The focus is on the athletes to help them perform well by giving them the surety that plans will be carried out."
Vaughan said Crocker and former Rowing New Zealand chief executive Craig Ross were "strongly" considered for the role. Vaughan acknowledged Crocker's "outstanding contribution" to the team. Crocker's continuation in the role had been in confusion before the start of the home summer last December, after NZC began looking for successors. He was reportedly even given a farewell then by the team.
Barry Maister, the New Zealand Olympic Committee secretary-general, was confident Currie could handle both roles. "We are delighted for him and think it can work," Maister said. "We don't see any problem at all because NZC have agreed that around Delhi time he will be freed up to work for us and we have the internal staff now to do the sort of work Dave normally did.
"We have absolutely no doubt that he will deliver what we want from Dave, which is an environment to inspire athletes."