Derbyshire: Mickey Arthur has decided to relinquish his post as the Sri Lankan cricket team chief coach after the home Test series against the West Indies, and will move to English county side Derbyshire to guide the club. Arthur will replace Zimbabwean tactician Dave Houghton, who has decided to leave the county side at the end of the 2021 season.

Arthur, who was appointed Sri Lanka coach in February 2020, termed his new assignment as an “exciting project” and a “new challenge”.

“This is the start of an exciting project at Derbyshire, with many young players, and I’m really excited to be a part of that and to bring my vision to the club. It’s a new challenge and one which I’m eager to get stuck into and lead this club to success,” said Arthur, whose last assignment with the Sri Lankan team is a two-Test series against the West Indies beginning November 21.

“There’s a good squad at Derbyshire and I want us to play a positive style of cricket, we won’t fear any team and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can achieve for our supporters,” he added.

Derbyshire chairman, Ian Morgan is happy to have a coach like Arthur. “Mickey is one of the most highly-regarded coaches in world cricket and this is a key appointment for the Club ahead of an important winter period. Throughout this recruitment process, Mickey has understood our heritage as a county, but also matched our ambition with a desire to make a positive impact at Derbyshire,” Morgan said.

“We want to move forward from last season. We’ve got a talented group of players and with a new Head of Cricket bringing a fresh approach, it is an exciting time for our Members and supporters,” he added.

Having held coaching roles with Australia, South Africa, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, Arthur oversaw a successful period for South Africa as national coach between 2005 and 2010, a spell highlighted by series wins over Australia, India and Pakistan.

He later coached Australia, before guiding Pakistan to their first ICC Champions Trophy in 2017.