His appointment as the Proteas’ new assistant coach is the pinnacle of his career, Adrian Birrell has said.
It is a big statement from the 52-year-old, considering that he has coached in all test countries except for India.
He also took Ireland to the Super Eights in the 2007 World Cup.
“I am very honoured and proud and it is an absolute dream to be in this position. It is the biggest role that I have ever been involved in,” Birrell said yesterday.
“I have been a day-in, day-out coach for 27 years, which means I have done the whole coaching spectrum through township development and assessment of coaching. Being at the highest level is absolutely amazing for me.”
While he may be senior in terms of cricket experience, Birrell said his job was to make life easier for head coach Russell Domingo.
He coached Domingo at junior provincial level, but later became Domingo’s assistant at the Warriors.
Birrell was announced as Domingo’s replacement as assistant coach. Greg King temporarily replaces Rob Walter, who took up the Titans’ head coaching role.
“His (Domingo’s) mind might be elsewhere in planning strategies and I might have to run practices and do a lot of the hard core coaching roles. We’ve had a good partnership before and I hope it will continue going forward.”
Also announced were the ODI and T20 teams to tour Sri Lanka at the end of the month.
Again there was no Jacques Kallis and Graeme Smith, with the former taking leave from bilateral series while the test captain is recovering from ankle surgery.
Dale Steyn is also a notably absent with injury niggles, while Morne Morkel makes a return after a quad injury that scuppered his Champions Trophy participation.
South Africa ODI squad
AB de Villiers (captain), Hashim Amla, Farhaan Behardien, Quinton de Kock, Faf du Plessis, JP Duminy, Colin Ingram, Rory Kleinveldt, Ryan McLaren, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Chris Morris, Alviro Petersen, Robin Peterson, Aaron Phangiso, Lonwabo Tsotsobe
South Africa T20 squad
Faf du Plessis (captain), Farhaan Behardien, Henry Davids, Quinton de Kock, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Imran Tahir, Rory Kleinveldt, Ryan McLaren, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Chris Morris, Wayne Parnell, Aaron Phangiso, Lonwabo Tsotsobe, David Wiese
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