Kirsten wants a cultural change in South African team: Ntini

Makhaya Ntini said Gary Kirsten gives people opportunities, and then it’s up to them to prove themselves Getty Images

Johannesburg: Jan 23, 2012

Former India coach and presently in charge of the South African cricket team, Gary Kirsten, has great plans for the Proteas, according to several former players.

“(Kirsten) wants to change the cricket culture in South Africa,” former paceman Makhaya Ntini said.

“Gary has done so much to show that his plans don’t just depend on a handful of people,” Ntini told the daily ‘SportsDay’, citing the inclusion of six players of colour in the fourth one-dayer against visiting Sri Lanka last week.

“That tells you he wants change. He gives people opportunities, and then it’s up to them to prove themselves,” he said.

Former Proteas batsman Boeta Dippenaar also lauded Kirsten for the role he had played in the improved performance of the team in the past one year.

Dippenaar felt that Kirsten’s stint with India, a team he led to the World Cup victory last year, had given him more ideas.

“Although Gary is one of our own, he had to go out of our system before he came back in,” Dippenaar said, adding that the time away from home had given Kirsten “a new perspective and fresh ideas”.(PTI)