Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on Thursday appointed former South African cricketer Gary Kirsten as their new coach and mentor. Kirsten, who led India to the ICC World Cup 2011 title, had joined the franchise as the batting coach ahead of IPL 2018.
RCB in an official release stated, “Gary Kirsten who joined RCB in 2018 as batting coach brings to the team a wealth of experience having played close to 700 matches (ODI, Tests and First Class) scoring close to 40,000 runs across all formats. Since taking over as the Head Coach of the Indian Cricket Team in 2008 and leading them to the World Cup win in 2011, Gary has for the past 10 years coached at the highest levels with 2 years as South African cricket team head coach, Head Coach in the T20 for 3 seasons and 1 season at Hobart Hurricanes before joining RCB last season.”
The franchise recently sacked Daniel Vettori as coach of the team. The former Kiwi spinner was the head coach of the franchise from 2013 to 2018.
RCB has never won the IPL, despite reaching the final on three occasions. Virat Kohli has been a part of the franchise from the first season and has been the captain of the team since 2013.
Commenting on his appointment, Gary Kirsten said, “I had the privilege of coaching with the RCB team last season under head coach Daniel Vettori and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. I look forward to continuing the journey with RCB and doing my best to help the franchise reach its potential. I want to thank the team management for considering me in a leadership position with the franchise and I look forward to a successful few years.”
Moving on from Royal Challengers Bangalore, Daniel Vettori, the former head coach said, “I am extremely grateful for the eight years I have spent with RCB, as a player and a coach and I wish the franchise all the best moving forward.”
Kirsten has worked in close capacity with Kohli during the former’s tenure as the head coach of the India team until 2011. After taking up a similar role with the South Africa team, he ventured into the T20 landscape with Delhi Daredevils in 2013. But his three-year contract with the Delhi franchise was terminated after two sub-par seasons during which the Daredevils, another trophy-less team, managed only seven wins and finished bottom of the table each time. He also enjoyed a stint with the Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash League.