Young blood to fire up Black Caps

Last updated 00:16 01/11/2008

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The New Zealand cricket team will soon be in young hands with the imminent appointments of a 36-year-old general manager and a 35-year-old national coach.

Former Black Caps fast bowler Geoff Allott will be named next week as New Zealand Cricket's general manager and if all goes to plan his appointment will be followed by that of rookie New South Wales coach Matthew Mott.

Allott's appointment was leaked to The Dominion Post last night while the newspaper understands Mott is NZC's top pick to replace national coach John Bracewell when his contract expires in April of next year.

Mott is in a virtual tug of war between NZC and NSW, both wanting the services of the up-and-comer who led NSW to the Sheffield Shield/Pura Cup title in his first season in charge.

Mott also has the backing of the New Zealand players after he left a favourable impression on Brendon McCullum during the Indian Premier League when he acted as John Buchanan's assistant at the Kolkata Knight Riders.

To illustrate Mott's age, he played against Daniel Vettori for Queensland during New Zealand's tour to Australia in 1997.

While Mott's signature has not yet been clinched, that of Allott's has.

Allott was a lion-hearted left-arm fast bowler for Canterbury and New Zealand until his career was cut short by back problems.

He took only 19 wickets in 10 tests at 58.47 but really left his mark on the one-day game where in 31 matches he captured 52 wickets at 23.21.

Ironically, his only world record was as a batsman when he took 101 minutes over a runless innings against England at Eden Park. His other starring role came at the 1999 World Cup, where he set a record of 20 wickets in the seamer-friendly competition, a figure later equalled by Shane Warne from one extra match.

Allott worked in the banking sector in Christchurch after his career wound up and managed Shane Bond on a semi-formal basis.

In June, NZC announced a restructuring of its administration. Eleven positions were disestablished, 20 new jobs created.

The key position of general manager, cricket, has taken considerable time to fill but NZC chief executive Justin Vaughan has always maintained getting the right man was his priority, not filling it quickly.

Allott's role will be to oversee all aspects of elite level and high-performance cricket, including the national team, coaching and related logistics.

 

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- The Dominion Post

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