James Foster to Join Vancouver Knights
Essex wicket-keeper batsman, James Foster, will head to Canada at the end of the month to become Assistant Coach of Vancouver Knights in the Global T20 League.
Foster has been given permission by the Club to take up this coaching opportunity to further his coaching experience from 28th June to 17th July after which he will return to the club to continue his playing duties.
Having spent much of the winter coaching in the Bangladesh Premier League with the Khulna Titans alongside Head Coach Mahela Jayawardene and gaining coaching experience with Andy Flower and Paul Farbrace with respective England teams, the 38-year-old is looking to broaden his horizons as he reaches the latter stages of his playing career.
Foster is thrilled the Club have been so supportive and allowed him to take up the opportunity in Canada and said: "I am incredibly grateful that the club have given me the opportunity to pursue this coaching role in the Canadian Global T20 League.
"I did a lot of coaching over the winter and was fortunate enough to be offered some incredible opportunities, and this summer I was involved with the ICC Rest of the World Team vs the West Indies. I have always had a passion for coaching and have been working at Forest School for the last few years. But these recent opportunities have enthused me even more and the opportunity to travel to Canada was one that I had to accept looking longer term.
"I approached the club expressing my keen interest in taking this wonderful opportunity but given the dates it became clear that I would have to miss the Somerset 4-day game starting on the 25th June. Essex kindly agreed to let me take up the coaching role, but they felt it was in the best interest of the side to have the same wicket keeper for the block of three Championship matches against Lancashire, Nottinghamshire and Somerset.
"This was a decision I gave great consideration to, knowing the hard work it took me to get back into the side during the 2017 championship winning season, however I felt this was the right thing for me personally as coaching is the direction I want to explore when I eventually finish playing. I respect the club's decision to bring Adam in and wish him and the team the best of luck.
"I am thankful that the Club are helping with my transition into coaching and my career development. However, I am still feeling fit, enjoy training and playing and feel that I have a lot of cricket left in me.
"When I return from Canada I will be putting my all into contributing to Essex and I believe I still have a lot to offer this team and want to be playing for Essex beyond this season."
Essex Head Coach, Anthony McGrath, is pleased that Foster has been offered such an opportunity, and added: "This a great chance for Foz to continue his coaching development in a high profile environment, with high quality players.
"This is a recognition of both his coaching ability, but also how respected he is within the game and I am sure it will be another great opportunity to learn and aid his career development.
"At James' stage of his life he needs to start looking ahead to the future, and this is another chance to boost his coaching CV further. It is encouraging to see the growth of Michael Pepper who has played a lot of Second XI cricket, and he will be understudy to Adam Wheater until Foz returns."
© Cricket World 2018