India in New Zealand 2008-09 February 24, 2009

Auckland coach to assist Moles during India series

Cricinfo staff

Andy Moles is set to get some help © Getty Images

Auckland coach Mark O'Donnell will assist the New Zealand coach Andy Moles during the home series against India. The series gets under way in Christchurch on Wednesday with the first of two Twenty20 internationals but O'Donnell will join the national team by the first one-day international in Napier on March 3.

"It's a great opportunity for Mark," Andrew Eade, Auckland Cricket chief executive, was quoted as saying in the New Zealand Herald. "Andy and Mark have been great mates for a long time. They work well together."

Eade said O'Donnell's work ethic and good player skills made him a perfect fit for the job. He said Auckland will appoint an interim coach for the rest of the domestic season, which ends on April 8 with the State Championship final.

The paper reported that the leading candidates to replace him are the former New Zealand opener Matthew Horne and the former Zimbabwe legspinner Paul Strang. Eade said a final decision will be made later this week.