File photo of Gary Kirsten. Photograph:( Zee News Network )
Gary Kirsten, former South Africa opener and India's World Cup-winning coach, is a leading contender to become Pakistan's next coach, succeeding Misbah-ul-Haq.
Pakistan cricket team saw the untimely resignations of Misbah-ul-Haq and Waqar Younis from the post of head coach and bowling coach, respectively, before the T20 World Cup 2021 edition. While Saqlain Mushtaq is serving as the interim coach for the Babar Azam-led Men in Green in the showpiece event, the Pakistan cricket team is set to get a new coach post the T20 WC.
Gary Kirsten, South Africa's former opener and India's World Cup-winning coach, is likely leading the race to become the next head coach of Pakistan cricket. Along with him, Simon Katich and Peter Moores are also some of the other candidates in the race but Kirsten is touted to be the frontrunner, as per a report in the Indian Express.
As per reports, it is believed that the current Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ramiz Raja is eager to rope in a foreign coach for the national side. Hence, the board will find it tough to convince the desired candidate to take up the challenging role and let go of a chance to become the head coach of a T20 franchise.
Talking of Kirsten, the former left-hander is known for his man-management skills and calm and composed nature as a head coach. During his stint with Team India, from 2008-2011, he led the MS Dhoni-led side to the 2011 ODI World Cup and also to the top of the Test rankings along with a series win in New Zealand. Following his role in Indian cricket, Kirsten had also served as South Africa's head coach.
Since then, he has also coached the Hobart Hurricanes and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). However, he didn't have much success as an IPL coach.
Pakistan team currently has Mushtaq serving as the head coach whereas Matthew Hayden has been roped in as the batting consultant and Vernon Philander as the bowling coach for the T20 WC. They are expected to get a new coach post the World Cup and before their Bangladesh tour.