Mumbai Indians have given Zaheer Khan and Mahela Jayawardene additional responsibilities as members of a “central team” to ensure uniformity across the organization’s three T20I teams: Mumbai Indians, MI Emirates (of the International T20 League) and MI Cape Town (from SA20).
After the Mumbai Indian owners acquired the two new franchises, the top coaching positions were streamlined.
The debut seasons of the ILT20 and SA20 both take place in January and February of the following year.
A central team would ensure consistency in the ‘one family of teams: management of the Mumbai Indians’
Due to his vast experience as a player and captain of international teams and as a coach in franchise T20 cricket, the owners believed that one person should be in charge of the coaching arm worldwide in light of the changed circumstances. Jayawardene was the ideal candidate for this position.
“A central team would ensure consistency in the ‘One family of teams’, in terms of ethos, values and learning,” Mumbai Indians stated in a communiqué.
Zaheer Khan, who is now the Director of Cricket Operations for the IPL, will now represent Mumbai Indians as Global Head of Cricket Development. He will supervise “player development, building on MI’s robust talent identification and nurturing program and applying the same across geographies.”
Mahela Jayawardene, who currently serves as head coach, has been named Global Head of Performance.
His job will be to provide “Higher leadership of the group’s global cricket operations, including overall strategic planning, creating an integrated global high-performance ecosystem, as well as responsibility for each team’s coaching and support structures, working closely with the team lead coaches to create synergies, a consistent brand of cricket, and implementation of MI best practices.”
Mahela Jayawardene is already at work
Mahela Jayawardene has already started in his new role and was involved in the negotiations that led to Mark Boucher joining MI Cape Town as head coach.
In August, Jayawardene took part in the process of choosing the five direct acquisitions for the SA20 team. He will also sit next to Boucher at the SA20 players’ auction, which is scheduled for September 19 in Cape Town.
After Stephen Fleming, who has been with Chennai Super Kings since 2009 and has won four IPL titles with them, Jayawardene is the second most successful coach in the IPL.
In six seasons, the Jayawardene-Rohit Sharma team has progressed to three IPL finals and, amazingly, has won the championship each time. Apart from the Super Kings, they are the only team to have five IPL championships and the only team to successfully defend the title in 2020.
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