Gary Kirsten To Step Down As South Africa Coach

Gary Kirsten To Step Down As South Africa Coach
Gary Kirsten To Step Down As South Africa Coach
©REUTERS / Action Images

Gary Kirsten has decided not to renew his contract and will step down as South Africa head coach, Cricket South Africa (CSA) have confirmed.

Kirsten was appointed on a two-year deal in August 2011 but was required to inform the board by April 30th 2013 whether he wants to renew his deal but he has decided to step down due to family reasons.

"Gary has a young family and it is understandable that he wishes to spend more time at home," CSA President and Board chairman Chris Nenzani said.

"I would like to thank him for his tremendous contribution to the well being of the Proteas over the past two years. It is obvious to all of us, whether we have been close to the Proteas or simply fans watching from the stands, the standard of excellence that he has brought to our national team and it will be wonderful if he can complete his tenure by bringing home the ICC Champions Trophy next month.

"With the Proteas due to tour Sri Lanka in July and August and important home series coming up against India and Australia next season it is important that we move quickly to identify his successor. The Board will be following due process as far as this is concerned.

"Gary certainly leaves the Proteas in good health and, although we are disappointed to lose him as head coach, he has put the foundations in place to carry us forward.

"We will certainly endeavour to retain his services in some capacity as his experience as player, coach and mentor is not something we want to lose in its entirety."

Kirsten commented: "I would like to thank Cricket South Africa for the confidence they showed in entrusting me with the fortunes of the national team. It has been a huge privilege to represent my country as player and coach and to have been given the responsibility of growing the team.

"I would particularly like to thank Cricket South Africa for allowing me the flexibility to combine my coaching job with my family life during my tenure.

"There have been many highlights over the past two years which have been well documented and I have every confidence that the Proteas will continue to go from strength to strength."

Kirsten joined the Proteas on the crest of a wave after leading India to victory in the 2011 World Cup, and under his stewardship they climbed to number one in the Test match rankings with away victories over England and Australia key to their good run of form.

A recent coaching restructure saw Russell Domingo installed as Twenty20 coach and he may emerge as a front-runner to replace Kirsten as South Africa begin preparations for the 2015 World Cup and the defence of their number one status in Test cricket.

© Cricket World 2013

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