Smith, Van Zyl stay until World Cup

South Africa captain Graeme Smith and interim coach Corrie van Zyl were appointed on Friday to lead South Africa until after next year’s Cricket World Cup.

Cricket South Africa (CSA) announced after a board meeting that the pair would stay in charge until April 2011.

Jacques Kallis will be Smith’s vice-captain in all forms of the game for the same period.

Van Zyl was appointed interim coach after the resignation of coach Mickey Arthur in January. Arthur said at the time that he had differences with the CSA board about the way forward for the South African team.

Van Zyl, a former South Africa fast bowler, took over at short notice for South Africa’s tour of India, where a Test series finished one-all on Thursday.

A three-match one-day international series starts in Jaipur on Sunday, with Kallis captaining the side in place of Smith, who suffered a finger injury before the second Test.

Busy period
Friday’s announcement means Van Zyl will be in charge during a busy period for the national team, which includes the World Twenty20 in the West Indies, a Test and one-day series in the West Indies, an away series against Pakistan and home series against Zimbabwe and India before the World Cup in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

At the time of Arthur’s resignation, CSA chief executive Gerald Majola said the board would decide on a new structure for the national squad at Thursday’s meeting, but the structure will not come into effect until after the 2011 World Cup.

The CSA statement said Majola had been charged with compiling a process for providing the South African team with a strong management team.

Following the disbanding of the national selection panel at the time of Arthur’s resignation, a new four-man panel will be appointed as soon as possible, with a convenor, a high performance representative, the coach and the captain.

In the meantime, an interim committee comprising Majola as convenor, Van Zyl and batting consultant Kepler Wessels will continue to operate.

The board also announced an expanded squad of 22 nationally contracted players. Newcomers include batsman Alviro Petersen, who a century on debut in the second Test against India, Loots Bosman, Charl Langeveldt, Ryan McLaren, Roelof van der Merwe and uncapped seam bowler Juan “Rusty” Theron. — AFP

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