Pretoria News

Nkwe: Gwavu will help Proteas maintain strong fielding tradition


THE Proteas installed another building block in their preparation for the ICC World Cup later this year with the appointment of Wandile Gwavu as the team’s permanent white-ball fielding coach yesterday.

Gwavu replaces Justin Ontong, who performed the duty under previous head coach Mark Boucher.

The 36-year-old will have a key role to play alongside new limited-overs head coach Rob Walter and batting lead JP Duminy.

The former Lions mentor has experience with the national team after recently performing the duty on a part-time basis during the inbound limited-overs tours against West Indies and Netherlands this past summer.

Gwavu enjoyed great success as Lions head coach at the Wanderers before joining up with the men’s national team. He was named domestic coach of the season in his first year in charge, and has since led the highveld team to five titles in four seasons – the most by any Lions coach.

He was also assistant coach to the Jozi Stars (Mzansi Super League) and Joburg Super Kings (Betway SA20) and enjoyed national spells with the SA Under-19s and SA A side.

Gwavu has a close association with Duminy after providing the former Proteas all-rounder with his first coaching stint at the end of his playing days when he appointed him Lions batting coach two seasons ago.

“We are pleased to confirm Wandile as the fielding coach for the Proteas men’s limited-overs team. He brings a wealth of experience at the highest level in South African cricket, with a coaching career that speaks volumes,” said Enoch Nkwe, the director of cricket at Cricket SA.

“With the fine margins and the ever-increasing stakes in 50-over and T20 cricket, fielding has become a critical part of any successful team, and we strongly believe Wandile’s expertise will help the Proteas maintain their strong tradition of fielding excellence across both formats.

“Wandile also permanently joins the set-up during an exciting period as the team transition into a crucial preparatory phase ahead of the 2023 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup in India later this year.”

The Proteas gained automatic qualification for the World Cup earlier in the week when the first ODI between Ireland and Bangladesh was washed out.

Ireland could therefore no longer overtake the Proteas in eighth place – the last remaining automatic qualification spot – on the ICC Super League ODI table.





African News Agency