Blackcaps' Selection Manager joins Bears as Performance Director
Warwickshire has appointed former New Zealand international and current BLACKCAPS Selection Manager Gavin Larsen as the Club’s new Performance Director.
Larsen – who’s overseen player selection for New Zealand Cricket (NZC) across all formats since 2015 – is set to join the Bears in April or May, subject to being granted a visa.
He will replace former Director of Cricket Paul Farbrace who left Edgbaston last October.
Larsen has played a key role during a period of sustained, unprecedented success for New Zealand Cricket in recent years.
During his time as Selection Manager, the BLACKCAPS have played in the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup Final, the 2021 ICC T20 World Cup Final, won the inaugural ICC World Test Championship and have, at different times, been ranked as the world’s No.1 team in each of the three formats.
As a player Larsen made 121 ODI appearances from 1990-99 during which time he featured in three World Cups and reached successive semi-finals. He also played eight tests for his country, taking 24 wickets.
After retiring from cricket in 1999 Larsen spent seven years as Head of Sports Sponsorship with ANZ National Bank, before becoming Chief Executive at Cricket Wellington – where he spent his whole first class career – and later BLACKCAPS 2015 World Cup Cricket Operations Manager.
Warwickshire CCC Chief Executive Stuart Cain said he’s delighted to have landed someone of Larsen’s international pedigree.
He said: “I’m really pleased Gavin is joining the team. He’s played at the highest level, is a proven leader on and off the field, and shown he thrives in high-pressure environments.
“What impressed me was his top-to-bottom knowledge of all aspects of cricket from player recruitment and contracts, coaching, succession planning and talent ID, to the physio, nutrition and psychology side of the game.
“Cricket Wellington has a domestic cricket calendar similar to ours, with a red ball season, T20 and a one day competition so he’s familiar with the structure and competing demands.
“And importantly he has a clear global cricket mindset; he understands the challenges of modern cricket, the impact of franchise leagues around the world, and player contracts in the modern cricket era.
“His time in business also means that he can be an effective link between the board room and the dressing room.”
Larsen said he’s thrilled to be joining Warwickshire and making Edgbaston – a ground that holds special memories from his international playing days – his new home.
“Warwickshire is a club with an amazing history and tradition,” he added, “and I’m looking forward to joining the team and helping to drive the club’s ongoing success.
“Working closely with everyone involved in Warwickshire high performance cricket is crucial and I’m really looking forward to growing relationships with a wide range of cricket people throughout the county.
“I have some great memories of Edgbaston during my New Zealand playing days and the atmosphere was simply terrific. To now have Edgbaston as my place of work is wonderful and I can’t wait to reacquaint myself with this great ground.
“It’s a special opportunity for my wife Karen and I to settle in Birmingham, and we are looking forward to making Warwickshire our new home.”
Larsen is due to join up with the players and coaching staff for a few days during the team’s pre-season tour of South Africa before taking up the post of Performance Director in April or May.
NZC’s High Performance Manager Bryan Stronach said Larsen could look back with pride on a highly successful term as the BLACKCAPS Selection Manager.
“Gavin was part of a support team that made a key contribution to arguably the most successful period in the history of the New Zealand men’s team,” said Stronach.
“His appointment at Edgbaston reflects the value and respect that he’s held in around the cricketing world.
“We thank him for his years of service to NZC and congratulate him for being appointed to such a significant role with Warwickshire.”