England begin coach interviews with Katich and Kirsten favourites


he interview process for England’s vacant men’s coaching positions begin today, with managing director Rob Key leading the process.

It is possible that a Test coach will be appointed by the end of this week, which would allow the successful candidate to influence selection for the First Test against New Zealand. A squad for that match, which begins on June 2, will be announced next week.

Key has expressed a strong preference for splitting the coaching of Test and white-ball cricket because of England’s relentlessly demanding schedule.

Australian Simon Katich and Gary Kirsten are the leading contenders for the Test job, but Graham Ford and Jason Gillespie are also in the mix. Paul Collingwood remains favourite for the white-ball job.

The ECB are finding identifying a new chair far more complicated. The Times reports that Ron Kalifa, the favourite for the post, has withdrawn from the running.

Kalifa, a businessman and ECB board member, was initially in charge of the recruitment process to replace Ian Watmore, who resigned in October.

He recently stepped back from the nominations committee and became favourite to take the part-time, paid role, but has had a change of heart, which leaves the ECB very short of options.

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