Michael Bevan to coach Madurai franchise in Tamil Nadu Premier League
Former Australian cricketer Michael Bevan, regarded by many as the greatest finisher in the history of ODI cricket, has been named as the head coach of the Madurai Super Giants franchise in the Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL). The franchise representatives made the announcement during the player draft ceremony which was held at a five-star hotel in Chennai on Saturday.
The inaugural edition of the TNPL, the brainchild of former president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and current Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) president, Mr. N Srinivasan, will see as many as eight city-based franchises – Lyca Kovai Kings (Coimbatore), Madurai Super Giants (Madurai), Tuti Patriots (Thoothukudi), Dindigul Dragons (Dindigul), Chepauk Super Gillies (Chennai), Kancheepuram, Thiruvalluvar and Karaikudi competing against each other from the fourth week of August for a two-week period.
The representatives of the Madurai franchise, which fetched the fourth highest bid among the eight teams of a little above 4 crores by Kothari (Madras) International Limited, revealed after a well-thought out process, they have opted to go in with Bevan as their coach.
"Bevan comes in with rich international experience and it's a bonus to have a cricketer of such repute as our coach," said Rafiq, representative of the franchise. While other franchises have already named their support staffs well in advance, Madurai wants to have a consultation with Bevan, who is expected to head over to India within the next two weeks, in order to appoint people whom the Australian will also be comfortable to work and interact with.
"We were having discussions with others as well," replied Rafiq, when questioned about the composition of the team’s support staff.
Bevan, who was part of the triumphant Australian squads that won the ICC World Cup in 1999 and 2003, was an accomplished player in the format, particularly known for his ability to successfully negotiate a match while chasing even with tail-enders batting at the other end.
His batting average of 53.58 in ODIs is the highest for any retired cricketer and he also holds the record for the highest average (over 57) of any player to have scored 10,000 runs in List A games.
After being forced to retire from the game due to injuries, Bevan has been pursuing a career as a coach and has worked with other teams in India before. In fact, Bevan coached the Chennai Superstars franchise in the now-defunct Indian Cricket League before coaching the Kings XI Punjab franchise in the fourth edition of the IPL. He also had a brief stint as Orissa coach before heading to Australia citing family reasons.
Apart from Bevan, yet another ODI specialist in South Africa’s Lance Klusener will also be seen in the dugout at the TNPL as the star of the 1999 World Cup will be coaching the Coimbatore-based franchise in the TNPL.
Madurai Super Giants squad: Arun Karthick, Suresh Kumar, Thiyagarajan, Francis Rokins, DT Chandrasekar, Vignesh Ganapathi, M Raja, Shijit Chandran, L Vignesh, Maan K Bafna, SV Muruganatham, S Aswin Kumar, P Amarnath, Varun Narendar, P Sakthi, Anton Andrew, R Mihir, Edward Kennedy, C Madhu