South Africa, Gary Kirsten, Cardiff, The Hundred
Kirsten, who was last week unveiled as Durban Heat’s coach for the second edition of the Mzansi Super League, would take charge of the Cardiff franchise which is expected to be named Western Fire. @ AFP

Former South Africa opener and India coach Gary Kirsten has been appointed the head coach of the Cardiff-based franchise for The Hundred tournament.

Kirsten, who was last week unveiled as Durban Heat’s coach for the second edition of the Mzansi Super League, will take charge of the Cardiff franchise which is expected to be named Western Fire.

Kirsten’s coaching credentials include guiding India to the 2011 World Cup at home, while also ensuring India and South Africa to the top of the ICC men’s Test rankings. He also has coaching for a franchise with fruitful stints with Big Bash League side Hobart Hurricanes and Indian Premier League franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).

READ: India’s World Cup-winning coach Gary Kirsten roped in by MSL franchise Durban Heat

“To be involved in English and Welsh cricket from a coaching perspective is something that I have never done. It’s great to be given that opportunity and to come to Cardiff,” Kirsten was quoted as saying in a release by England Cricket on Monday.

“This is a new format that I am sure will grow and grow. The real win is that it will grab the attention of families and expose the game of cricket to as many environments and communities as possible.”

Meanwhile, Matthew Mott will coach the women’s franchise, combined with his current role as Australia women’s coach. The women’s team will also play at Taunton and Bristol, as well as in Cardiff.

Mott was head coach at Glamorgan between 2010 and 2013 and has coached the Australia national side since March 2015. “Cardiff is a special place for me and my family and that was a big part in my decision to return,” he said.

“I’ve got no doubt The Hundred will be a success for the women’s game. I’ve got a young son who is a Sydney Sixers fan and he doesn’t see gender – he just sees the team. The Hundred will provide that sort of platform in England and Wales and I can’t speak highly enough of what that can mean for the game.”

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The Hundred competition organised by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) will be an eight-team competition which will begin in 2020. Kirsten is the fourth overseas coach who has been confirmed along with Australians Andrew McDonald (Birmingham), Simon Katich (Manchester) and Shane Warne (Lord’s).

Reportedly, former Australia batsman Darren Lehmann, is set to be appointed to run the Leeds-based team.