Dhaka: The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) on Thursday appointed former West Indies fast bowler Courtney Walsh as the national team’s pace bowling coach. Walsh, who boasts of a tally of 519 Test wickets, has signed a three-year contract to stay with Bangladesh until the 2019 World Cup, the board confirmed, reports bdnews24.com.
The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) had broken the news before the BCB revealed that the 53-year-old Caribbean legend is the new Bangladesh bowling coach. Having served as one of the selectors for his national team before this, Walsh’s contract with the WICB came to an end last month. Towards the start of August, the BCB said a new coach had been “finalised” but the announcement had to wait because of “some obligations” which he had for his previous contract. Bangladesh had been without a pace bowling coach since late May this year when Heath Streak announced he would not be renewing his contract.
The BCB was hunting for a new coach since then. Big names like Chaminda Vaas, Aaqib Javed, Curtly Ambrose, Ottis Gibson and even Allan Donald were all frequently discussed but the board finally settled for Walsh. This will be the first major coaching role for Walsh who retired in 2001 as the then leading wicket-taker in Tests.
Since then he has worked for the WICB in various administrative roles. He was once the manager of the West Indies Under-19 team and also held a post in the WICB Cricket Committee. Walsh also worked as the mentor of the Jamaica Tallawahs in the Caribbean Premier League. Despite his coaching inexperience, Walsh is considered one of the best players to ever grace the game and leave a trail of glittering career behind him.
Walsh’s bowling partnership with Ambrose during their playing days remains a legend in the annals of world cricket. Walsh has a career spanning almost 17 years and was known for his consistency, patience, skills and guile. Walsh was the first bowler to reach the landmark haul of 500 Test wickets.
He has 227 wickets from 205 One-Day Internationals while his English county cricket tally speak for itself — 869 wickets from 184 matches in his 14-year course with Gloucestershire. He has a total of 1,807 wickets in first-class cricket. –IANS
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