South Africans keen to have Gary Kirsten as coach

Johannesburg: The Proteas are keen to have their former star batsman Gary Kirsten as national team`s coach next year, but Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni is reportedly among those pushing to have the South African`s contract as Indian coach renewed.

Kirsten had gained respect and popularity after taking over as coach of the Indian side in March 2008, the Afrikaans weekly Rapport said, adding that this was boosted by India`s victory against Australia earlier this month in Test series.

With Corrie van Zyl having announced his decision to retire as South African coach after the World Cup in March next year, Kirsten is one of those being eyed for the position by Cricket South Africa (CSA), according to insiders.

But Rapport added whether Kirsten would be available when his contract with India ends after the World Cup, will also depend on India`s performance in the tournament.

Current Indian players, especially the senior members of the team like Sachin Tendulkar and Dhoni are believed to be so impressed with Kirsten that they might even put pressure on the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) to offer him a new contract, the weekly reported.

It further said that Kirsten would be able to dictate his own pay cheque if India won the tournament.


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