Trevor Bayliss has been appointed as interim men’s head coach of the London Spirit in English cricket’s the Hundred competition following the death of Shane Warne.
One of the greatest players the sport has known, former Australia leg-spinner turned coach Warne died from a suspected heart attack aged 52 in Thailand in March, eliciting shock and grief throughout the whole of the cricket world.
The appointment of Bayliss sees the Australian reunited with Spirit captain Eoin Morgan after the pair combined to lead England to the 2019 50-over World Cup title with a thrilling victory over New Zealand at Lord’s, the headquarters of his new side.
Warne was the Spirit’s coach for last year’s inaugural season of the Hundred, a new 100 balls per side format that is even shorter than Twenty20 cricket.
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Although the Spirit finished bottom of the eight team table, he had been expected to return, with Bayliss, 59, saying in a statement: “It is obviously very bittersweet to take the role given the circumstances.
“It is an honour to try and build on the work Warnie started. The side knew what he and Eoin were trying to build and I hope we can do that this year,” added the experienced coach, who will charge for one year initially.
As well as having a four-year stint as England coach in both red and white-ball formats, Bayliss was also in charge of Sri Lanka from 2007-11.
He also coached Sydney Sixers to the inaugural 2011/12 title in Australia’s Big Bash Twenty20 competition, as well as twice winning the Indian Premier League — the world’s most lucrative domestic T20 franchise tournament — with Kolkata Knight Riders.
After stepping down from England duty three years ago, Bayliss has coached Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL and Sydney Thunder in the Big Bash.
Fraser Stewart, London Spirit team manager, said: “We were so lucky to work with Shane last year and we hope that the team will play in a style that he would have been proud of this summer.”
Spirit have the first pick in Monday’s player draft of the Hundred, the results of which will be announced on Tuesday.
They will hope to add two overseas players to bolster a squad that already includes England white-ball captain Morgan, Australia all-rounder Glenn Maxwell and a trio of England Test players in batsmen Zak Crawley and Dan Lawrence, together with fast bowler Mark Wood.
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