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Pakistan appoint Kirsten as ODI, T20I head coach, Gillespie in Test

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Lahore, April 28: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Sunday appointed World Cup-winning Gary Kirsten as their head coach for ODIs and T20Is, while former Australian pacer Jason Gillespie will take over that role in Test cricket.
Along with them, former Pakistan all-rounder Azhar Mahmood was appointed as the assistant coach of the team across the formats.
All appointments have been made for a duration of two years, and Naqvi said the coaches will not be subjected to evaluation before their term comes to an end.
“The appointment of (Gary) Kirsten and (Jason) Gillispie who are high-profile coaches shows how much value is given to the Pakistan cricket team and how much potential foreign coaches see in our players,” PCB chief Mohsin Naqvi said during a media conference.
“We want to give the team the best facilities and that is why we have gone for Kirsten and Gillispie,” he added.
Kirsten, who is currently the mentor of IPL side Gujarat Titans, is expected to take over from Pakistan’s tour of England from May 22.
Pakistan will play four T20Is and from there the team will travel for the T20 World Cup in June.
“He is presently occupied in the IPL while Gillespie will join the team before the start of our Test cricket schedule in August,” Naqvi said.
Asked if Kirsten and Gillespie would be available with the Pakistan team all the time he said the coaches will mostly be with the team and take their vacations as agreed in their contracts.
“We also want their expertise to improve our domestic cricket and help our local coaches.” Mahmood, who also attended the media conference, was the interim coach in the just-concluded T20I series at home against New Zealand, said it was time the Pakistani players showed more discipline and did things out of the box.
“If we are to keep up with the changing times in cricket our players also have to do some things unconventionally and think out of the box,” he said.
Pakistan have been on the search for a full-time head coach since the end of the 50-over World Cup last year where they failed to enter the knockout stages.
After their shambolic effort in the marquee event held in India, Pakistan had sacked the entire set of coaching staff – head coach Grant Bradburn, team director Mickey Arthur, bowling coach Morne Morkel and batting coach Andrew Puttick.
Premier batter Babar Azam was also removed from captaincy post the ICC showpiece with Pakistan opting to appoint pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi as their white-ball leader and Shan Masood doing that duty in Tests.
Along with that, Pakistan had also turned to former cricketer Muhammad Hafeez for the guiding role during their tour to Australia.
But Hafeez lost the job after Pakistan lost 0-3 in the Test series and 1-4 in the T20Is.While Masood was retained as Test captain, Afridi was relieved from leadership and Babar was reinstated in the last week of March. (PTI)

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