South Africa news

Kirsten popular choice for SA coach job

Firdose Moonda

April 11, 2011

Comments: 14 | Text size: A | A

Gary Kirsten addresses a press conference in Mumbai, April 5, 2011
Gary Kirsten is rumoured to be on the shortlist for the South Africa coach job, despite him not having officially applied © AFP
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Gary Kirsten, Vincent Barnes, Duncan Fletcher, John Buchanan and Richard Pybus are understood to be on the six-man shortlist for the South Africa coaching job. Tom Moody and Stephen Fleming are also rumoured to be in contention for the position.

Kirsten, who ended his tenure with India after winning the World Cup, is said to be the favourite, but has reportedly not submitted a formal application. Insiders have confirmed that he is on the shortlist and has been in contact with CSA chief-executive Gerald Majola. Kirsten had said he wanted to take some time off after his stint with India ended, which may be why he hasn't officially applied.

South Africa's next series is scheduled for October, against Australia, which would allow Kirsten a five-month break. Kirsten is understood to have shown interest in the position and CSA may have placed him on the shortlist to keep him in the running, despite the fact that he has not applied. Majola said in an interview in Colombo that CSA would not consider anyone who wasn't on the shortlist.

Although Kirsten is the popular choice, CSA are also considering other candidates, including the long-serving assistant coach Barnes. He has been in the national set up for the past eight years, since the 2003 tour to England, and had applied for the head coach's position when Mickey Arthur was appointed in May 2005. Barnes started off as the bowling coach and has been credited with being part of the reason behind the success of the likes of Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel and Lonwabo Tsotsobe. Barnes' obvious advantage is that he has worked with the national squad for a significant amount of time and has been a part of their recent successes, such as the series wins in England and Australia.

Fletcher has also been involved with the current crop of players, having joined as a batting consultant in the 2009-10 season. He previously coached England and was at the helm of their Ashes triumph in 2005. Buchanan also has much lauded international credentials to his name, having won three Ashes series and two World Cups with Australia. He is most recently known for his controversial coaching methods which involved a proposed captain-rotation policy at Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL.

Pybus is the only one who is working in the South African domestic set up. He took Cobras to a double title this season, winning both the first-class SuperSport Series competition and the Pro20. Having previously been involved with Titans and the Border province, before the franchises were formed, Pybus has an intricate knowledge of local cricket and has seen many of his charges progress to national honours. He coached Mark Boucher, Makhaya Ntini, Steyn, both Morkel brothers and Paul Harris, among others. He is known for his diverse, out-of-the-box thinking and was also head coach of Pakistan during the 1999 World Cup.

All six candidates, whose names cannot be officially released for confidentiality reasons, will undergo a rigorous interview process by a six-man panel appointed by CSA to choose the new coach. The committee consists of Majola, Andy O'Connor, chairperson of the cricket committee, Boeta Dippenaar, cricket association representative, Andrew Hudson, convenor of selectors and Corrie van Zyl, outgoing coach. Johann Coetzee, a human development consultant and consulting psychologist, was added to the panel last week and.

Interviews will be held on May 16 and 17, and the panel will make its recommendations at a board meeting on May 28. CSA hope to appoint the new coach at the beginning of June.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by poderdubdubdub on (April 12, 2011, 12:52 GMT)

I dont think the Indian success can be attributed to Kirsten. The current Indian team is a one off thing in a hundred year, once these players are gone ten kirstens wont achieve the present success for India. SA need a coach who can inject mental toughness to SA players.

Posted by arya_underfoot on (April 12, 2011, 10:00 GMT)

they'd be crazy not to go for kirsten if they could get him. he's just what the south african cricketers need. a behind the scenes guy who'll allow the players to get on with their jobs without any pressure.

Posted by venbas on (April 12, 2011, 8:58 GMT)

@Ashu - Buchanan for SAF. Are you kidding? With the kind of dream team they had, even a Monkey as coach could not have prevented the Aussies from acheiving sucess. Buchanan and Guru Greg are a sureshot recipe for failure.

Posted by Dhoni_fan_from_a_dada_era on (April 12, 2011, 8:42 GMT)

kirsten will have wide acceptability and he's the right guy.

Posted by bonaku on (April 12, 2011, 7:50 GMT)

Buchanan for SA ??.. not sure if it is wise one.

Posted by   on (April 12, 2011, 6:42 GMT)

are you kidding me harshalb? chapell for india again? he stuffed the team up. he was a dictator. he couldnt get along with the players. kirsten could, he understood them. he let them play free. its like he was one of them. dont ever forget chapell told sachin to move down the order and when he went back to the top he literally went back to the top. chapell admitted it was a mistake

Posted by Patz10 on (April 12, 2011, 5:44 GMT)

i remember the time AMLA was offered the position and he refused.on that note AB will be da next pik. PLZ WITH ALL DUE RESPECT TO BOTHA(NO.NO.NO) HE SEEMS TO BE JUST LIKE SMITH. AT THE END OF THE DAY AMLA SEEMS TO BE THE SINIOR ONE INFORM BUT IF HE IS NOT HAPPY AB IS ABSOLUTELY IDEAL FOR THE POSITION.

Posted by stormy16 on (April 12, 2011, 5:26 GMT)

Kirsten by a country mile if he is ready. I cant see CSA appoint an Australian to the top job!!

Posted by harshalb on (April 12, 2011, 5:13 GMT)

Buchanan for Australia, Kirsten for SA, Flower for England, Greg Chapell for India. Greg deserves another chance. The achievements of India during Kirsten's tenure were based on the foundation laid by Greg. The core group pf players were all identified by him during his talent search. Even the fire to win in 2011 was born in 2007 during the last world cup when Greg was the coach.

Posted by   on (April 12, 2011, 4:55 GMT)

kirsten??y??just becoz he won wc with india ..listn here sa board need to think hard abouttheir future.they need to provide team what team is needed and i dont think kirsten could do similar job or even close to same job as he did with india..india started to play well in 2007 when there was no coach..wt20,cb series,australia series success they achive when there was no one coaching..its not about coaches but its about players..sa is a very good team all they need to do something about their mentality.they need mental coaching and not cricket coaching..becoz they play excellent through out and then choke when it matters the most..so i think austalia coach moody is right man for this job

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