Big innings for new coach Botha

Alvin Reeves


reevesa@avusa.co.za  


NEWLY appointed coach Piet Botha says there will no major changes in his approach to coaching the Chevrolet Warriors.


Botha was formally introduced to the media yesterday as head coach of the Eastern Cape franchise. His assistant and new manager of coaching development, Adrian Birrell, was also named yesterday, although he only arrives back in the country from Ireland on September 1.


Botha said coaching was far from a perfect science and the successful methods instilled by former coach Russell Domingo and himself over the past six seasons would mostly remain the same.


“There won’t be massive changes to the way the Warriors approach the game,” said Botha. “I worked with Russell for the past six years and I know the strengths and weaknesses of all our players. There will be a slight difference in direction because I’m a different person from Russell. I have my own ideas, personality and ways of reading the game.”


There will be very little time for relaxation as his first assignment with the Warriors is at the Champions League in India in September.


“It’s a massive assignment for me as coach. When you get appointed as a coach, you want to sort of ease into things. That is definitely not the case with me. We did very well in the Champions League last year and we’ve got a reputation to uphold there,” said the 44-year-old.


“I haven’t been to India, but fortunately half my team has. So I’ve got a lot of experience to back me up. I’m sure we will be fine.”


Chief executive Dave Emslie said the Cricket Eastern Cape board was thrilled with the choices.


“Piet is one of those classic guys who has done his 10000 hours in the trenches,” said Emslie. “He has come through the system as a player. He administered club cricket at Border for a while and he has been an absolute stalwart in our amateur system and has shown tremendous results. He thoroughly deserves the appointment as the head coach.”


Birrell’s role is a new position. “Adi Birrell will work with our all-important feeder system, which includes Border, SWD and EP. In doing so, he will harness the undoubted talent we have in our regions. His credentials as a developer of cricketers are impeccable and his appointment is our passport to success,” said Emslie.

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