Gary Kirsten joins Green Shirts as new head coach, ahead of England T20I series

Gary Kirsten, Pakistan’s new white-ball head coach, has joined the national team in the United Kingdom ahead of the upcoming T20I series against England.

South Africa’s Kirsten, welcomed by the team’s senior manager Wahab Riaz, skipper Babar Azam and assistant coach Azhar Mahmood, was presented with the team’s training shirt in Leeds.

The development comes after the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) last month announced the appointment of new coaches for the limited-over format and Tests.

While Kirsten will serve as the Men in Green’s head coach in T20I and ODI formats, Australia’s Jason Gillespie will perform his duties as the team’s red-ball coach in Tests.

Kirsten represented South Africa in 101 Tests and 185 ODIs from 1993-2004, where he accumulated 14,087 runs with 34 centuries. On his appointment, he said that his goal as the team’s white-ball coach would be to ensure the team operates at its optimal level.

He previously coached India from 2008-2011 and helped them to the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2011 title as well as the number one position on the ICC Test Team Rankings.

He then coached the South Africa men’s cricket team from 2011-2013 and inspired them to the No 1 position on the ICC Test Team Rankings.

The first T20I between Pakistan and England will be played at Headingley, Leeds on May 22.

The T20I series would be of significant importance for both teams as just two days after its conclusion, the World Cup will begin in the United States.

Pakistan is placed in Group A of the World Cup alongside arch-rivals India, Ireland, Canada, and the USA. Meanwhile, England is slotted in Group B with Australia, Namibia, Scotland, and Oman.

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