By Bipin Dani
Former Sri Lanka coach, manager and mentor and the member of the 1996 World Cup team Asanka Gurusinha is on his way to Nigeria, having been appointed their cricket head coach.
The 54-year-old’s appointment was confirmed by Musa Ehizoje Bodie, the Public Relations Officer Nigeria Cricket Federation.
Speaking to Daily Mirror, he said, "Gurusinha has already left Australia and is on his way to Nigeria. He will assume charge and begin coaching the players from December 1 onwards.”
"We had over 20 applications but he fitted the profile of whom we are looking for the most.”
"Gurusinha has played and coached at the highest level. He has experience working with Sri Lanka and Australia.”
"He understands what we are trying to achieve with our cricket in Nigeria especially with our elite team and grassroot development. Gurusinha has had online interactions with the players before now.”
"Our national language is English and therefore language will not be a barrier for the players to interact with him," Musa Ehizoje Bodie explained.
The duration of Gurusinha's contract was not known yet but he is set to interact with the media on December 8.
Joshua Ayannaike is the national captain.
He said, “Getting such a high profile coach is highly motivating and great for the team and cricket development generally in the country.
This is a major step in advancing all aspects of the game in Nigeria and with his introduction we hope to improve our global rankings, compete successfully with the top teams in Africa and work our way back into playing the one day format of the game.”
"It’s great to finally have coach Asanka here, we are excited and eager to start working with him,” the captain further added.