Australians leading the race to replace Moody June 10, 2007

No rush to appoint Moody successor

Trevor Bayliss remains on Sri Lanka's wishlist but don't expect a decision any time soon © Getty Images

Sri Lanka will not rush to appoint a successor to Tom Moody as coach despite having identified the Australian pair of Terry Oliver and Trevor Bayliss as their top targets for the post.

Jayantha Dharmadasam, the interim committee president, said that although Oliver had already been interviewed by the board, and Bayliss would be on June 14, they wouldn't rush the decision. "At the moment we are very impressed with Oliver. But there are also others like Bayliss, Greg Shipperd and even Graham Ford. I am told that Ford is very good and if India doesn't take him we will be interested (India have now appointed Ford as coach).

"We don't want to be too hasty in appointing a coach because we have a lot of time on our hands. We want to make sure that we get the best. We have time till the Twenty20 World Cup in September to appoint someone," he said.

Following Moody's departure last month, coaching responsibilities for this month's series against Bangladesh passed onto Trevor Penney, the assistant coach. Penney, whose contract expires at the end of August, is set to join Moody at Western Australia. The contract of CJ Clark is unlikely to be renewed either after the Bangladesh series.

Oliver, in charge of Queensland, has previous experience of coaching in Sri Lanka, having worked with the national team's pace bowlers three years ago. He was interviewed by a panel comprising past captains and cricketers, including Michael Tissera, Anura Tennekoon, Bandula Warnapura, Duleep Mendis, Sidath Wettimuny, Aravinda de Silva and SLC secretary Kanagan Mathivanan.

Bayliss, the current New South Wales coach, made his mark as the head coach when he succeeded Steve Rixon three years ago. He became a cricket development officer for NSW and was a long-term second XI mentor before succeeding Rixon.