Melbourne: Australian David Saker, who has just passed three months as England’s bowling coach, has made it clear that his loyalties lies with England team.
“My loyalty is definitely with England. I worked for the Victorian cricket team, I didn’t work for the Australian cricket team. I never got asked to work for the Australian cricket team, not at any stage have I done any work for the Australian cricket team at international level,” he told The Sunday Age.
“As soon as I got offered the job working in international cricket my loyalties straight away went to that team, whether it was India, Pakistan, West Indies or whatever. It ended up being England and that’s where my loyalties went straight away.
“I’ve still got a soft spot for Victorian cricket and I watch Australian cricket with a lot of interest but I’ve embraced the English culture and the English team like they’ve embraced me,” Saker said.
In the eyes of the England and Wales Cricket Board, Saker’s eight years as a specialist coach in Australian domestic cricket were more valuable than the extensive international experience of other applicants, including South African Allan Donald and Australian Craig McDermott.
Shane Warne, Saker’s occasional teammate during his six-year playing career for the Bushrangers, immediately backed its decision. “He can be in your face at times he is pretty aggressive. But he is absolutely spot-on,” Warne said.