LONDON: Trevor Bayliss has become the first Australian to be appointed head coach of the England national team after being handed the post on Tuesday.
The 52-year-old succeeds Peter Moores, who was sacked earlier this month following England’s dismal performance at this year’s World Cup and a 1-1 draw in a Test series in West Indies.
Bayliss’ first major task will be to guide England during the five-match Ashes series against his native Australia.
“Bayliss has an outstanding record as coach, has global experience and is very highly regarded in the game,” said the England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB) director of cricket Andrew Strauss in a statement. “He has proved himself in both domestic and international cricket, has a strong reputation for man-management and has shown how to build winning teams in all three formats.”
Bayliss faces the huge task of instilling some stability into England as they try to regain the Ashes on home soil this summer after being whitewashed 5-0 in the last series.
That result let to a period of turbulence for the team as off field matters drew as many headlines as England’s miserable form on the pitch.
During the past 18 months, controversial batsman Kevin Pietersen was sacked after the England management accused of him of being a divisive presence in the dressing room during the doomed 2013-14 Ashes series.
ECB managing director Paul Downton departed in April as he paid the price for England’s failure to progress during the group stages of the World Cup.
Moores was also axed for failing to guide England to a series win in the Caribbean against what many considered to be a weak West Indies team.
Former Australia fast-bowler Jason Gillespie had been expected to be appointed to the role after talks with Strauss last week but Bayliss was chosen for his proven track record as a coach.
He led Sri Lanka to the 2011 World Cup final and has twice won the Sheffield Shield with New South Wales. Bayliss has also enjoyed success in the T20 format, winning the Australian Big Bash and Champions League with Sydney Sixers in 2012 and the Indian Premier League title with Kolkata Knight Riders in 2012 and 2014.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 27th, 2015.
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