Sri Lanka news September 10, 2011

Geoff Marsh in talks about Sri Lanka coaching role

Geoff Marsh, the former Australia batsman and coach, has confirmed discussions with Sri Lanka Cricket about the possibility of becoming national coach.

In Pallekele to witness his son Shaun's century on Test debut, Marsh has been weighing up the possibility of taking over the position vacated by Trevor Bayliss following the 2011 World Cup. Sri Lanka has since been under interim coaches, first Bayliss' assistant Stuart Law in England and then the former Sri Lanka fast bowler Rumesh Ratnayake in this series against Australia

Graham Ford, the former South Africa coach, was also sounded out about the role but reportedly declined. Marsh said that his former Australia team-mate Tom Moody, who coached Sri Lanka before Bayliss, had also been engaged in discussions.

"They had a word but nothing's come of it. I'm here totally focused on the Test match, but they've had a word to quite a few people," Marsh said.

"Definitely nothing formal, no. I may consider it but we'll just see how things go. You've got the IPL and all that to take into consideration, a lot of things, there's my job back at home. So they've spoken to Tom Moody and a whole heap of people, so we'll see how that all pans out."

Marsh played 50 Tests for Australia and then coached the national team for four years. He also worked as the coach of Zimbabwe and is presently with the IPL franchise Pune Warriors.

The Sri Lankans have not won in nine Tests since the retirement of Muttiah Muralitharan. They appear in need of a strong hand in the backroom to deliver stability and direction to a team that is in transition following the loss of Muralitharan and Chaminda Vaas. The batsmen in particular failed to give a worthy account of themselves against Australia, rolled for 105 and 174 in two first innings in Galle and Pallekele.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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