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Graham Ford has been announced as the new head coach of the Ireland cricket team.
The 56 year-old South African has signed a three-year deal
and will take over the reins from John Bracewell when his current
contract ends in December.
Ford played with Natal, before accumulating 25 years of coaching
experience including roles as Test coach with South Africa and Sri
Lanka (twice). He also enjoyed coaching spells with Natal/Dolphins,
Surrey and Kent.
"I am really excited to be a part of this new era in Irish cricket. I
have always enjoyed working with decent people and, in their attitude,
character and camaraderie, the Irish cricketers have always come
across as such," said Ford.
"With my knowledge and experience I believe I can genuinely make a
difference. All my efforts will be dedicated to assisting the players
to improve and achieve their full potential while playing an enjoyable
brand of cricket."
Cricket Ireland CEO Warren Deutrom welcomed the appointment of Ford, saying: "We are delighted to have a person of Graham's calibre as Ireland's
next Head Coach and we are all looking forward to working with him.
"Graham has a strong reputation for man-management, of improving individual and team performances at all levels, and has shown how to build winning teams in all three formats "He is well respected throughout the cricketing world, and we believe his coaching CV sends out a strong signal of our intention to try and hit the ground running as quickly as possible as a competitive force among the Full Member nations.”
Cricket Ireland performance director Richard Holdsworth outlined why Ford had been chosen from a strong field of candidates.
“Graham’s reputation for improving young players, his work ethic and
huge knowledge were among the key factors for his appointment," said
"The panel was strongly persuaded by Graham’s clear understanding of what the Ireland team and Irish cricket in general needs right now, while he is already familiar with some of our players through his coaching spells at Kent and Surrey.
"In the short term, his expertise in the shorter forms of the game
will also be vital as we build towards two major ICC events over the
next three years – including the ICC World Cup Qualifier in the first
half of 2018 – while longer term he is aiming to strengthen the
national team in its rebuilding process from a core of
long-established players to a younger less experienced team.
"John Bracewell and his support staff continue to plan the next few
months, while a hand-over with Graham during the tour to UAE in late
November and early December has been mutually agreed, after which
Graham will take charge."
Ireland are in action next week when they take on the West
Indies in a one-day international at Stormont, which will be broadcast
live in eir Sport.
Inpho: Image/Charlie Crowhurst
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