Ottis Gibson appointed head coach of Yorkshire

Leeds, Jan 19 (IANS) Ottis Gibson on Wednesday was appointed as Yorkshire’s new head coach on a three-year contract, starting from February. The club announced that the 52-year-old, who has previously been head coach of the West Indies and South Africa as well as the bowling coach for England and more recently, Bangladesh, is the latest addition to a new-look support staff at Headingley.

Gibson with join the club once his contract as bowling coach with the Multan Sultans in the upcoming season of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) finishes on the conclusion of the tournament. He replaces Andrew Gale, who was sacked from the club as part of a big overhaul of the backroom staff in the wake of the racism scandal after claims from former player Azeem Rafiq that rocked the cricketing world.

“I’m extremely honoured and excited to be given the opportunity to join Yorkshire County Cricket Club as Head Coach. This is one of the most prestigious roles in English County Cricket, and I am really looking forward to working with this talented group of players to take the club forward. I’ve spoken at length with Goughy (Darren Gough) about the direction the club is heading in and I’m excited to be a part of that future,” said Gibson on his appointment.

It was reported earlier that former Pakistan captain Younis Khan and former South Africa pacer Allan Donald were in contention for the job. But as things stand now, Gibson has been named for the post. He will report to interim Managing Director of Yorkshire Cricket, Gough, and will be supported by two assistant coaches who will be appointed shortly.

“Ottis becoming Head Coach is an important moment for Yorkshire County Cricket Club, and we are very happy that he has become part of the team. Ottis is one of the best coaches in the world and will be a fantastic addition. His knowledge, commitment, experience and cricket know-how will be vital for us as we move into pre-season and get ourselves up and running,” said Gough.

Gough further said the response for applying for the head coach’s job at Yorkshire was overwhelming. “We were absolutely blown away by the level of interest and quality of candidates for this role, but I have no doubt that he’s the best person for the job and will pick up the challenge with relish.”

In a 17-year playing career, Gibson played two Tests and 15 ODIs for the West Indies. As their coach, he was in charge of the side during their 2012 T20 World Cup triumph in Sri Lanka. Gibson also formed a key part of England’s backroom staff during two Ashes series victories and has played a pivotal role in the development of many players around the world.

“We’re delighted to welcome Ottis to the Club. His playing and coaching credentials speak for themselves and he has had a distinguished career performing at the highest level. Ottis’ character and his commitment to buying into the process that we are going through at Yorkshire County Cricket Club shone through in our discussions,” said Lord Patel, the Chairman of Yorkshire.

The 52-year-old has experienced county cricket as a player, representing Durham, Glamorgan and Leicestershire across both red and white-ball games. In 2007, Gibson made history as he scalped 10 wickets in an innings against Hampshire for Durham.

“He is someone that I know will encourage dialogue and help foster a culture of inclusion at the Club, as well as supporting and developing the world class talent we have here and pushing them to the next level. I look forward to working with Ottis over the coming weeks and months as we continue our rebuild of the Club,” concluded Patel.

–IANS

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