English #Cricket appointed Trevor Bayliss as their new head coach yesterday, to end the speculation over who would succeed the much maligned Peter Moores. After suggestions that former Australian fast bowler Jason Gillespie was in pole position for the post, it was his less-known compatriot who was instead given the 'nod'. He enters the position with England 1-0 ahead against New Zealand in their two-match Test series, with the formidable Australian tourists next on their agenda this summer.
Who is Trevor Bayliss?
For one thing he is NOT the inventor of the wind-up radio, which was his English namesake, Trevor Baylis. 52-year-old Bayliss is an Australian and becomes the first man from that country to coach their Ashes' opponents, filling the position vacated by Moores when he was sacked earlier this month.
Although Gillespie was a prominent international cricketer and played a major part in Yorkshire's county championship success last season (on the coaching side), far fewer English cricket fans will be familiar with Bayliss. Despite never playing for Australia, Bayliss brings with him a wealth of cricketing experience on the coaching side and has been crucially successful in the one-day format. With England's fortunes in the recent World Cup and in the years before far from exemplary, that is one area they will be keen to improve greatly on.
Their new coach was in charge of Test-playing nation Sri Lanka between 2007 and 2011. He also stepped in temporarily for Australia during their 2014 tour of South Africa, where he took charge for their Twenty20 series. His CV also boasts IPL experience in India, where he coached the Kolkata Knight Riders.
Turned down the role before
It is believed that Bayliss had turned down the England coaching role twice in the past, according to Geoff Lawson. The former Australian bowler confirmed that original contact was made with his erstwhile colleague before Moores' appointment last year. Although seemingly sceptical at first about the role, the New South Wales man's mind seems to have been made up by the opportunity of working with Paul Farbrace again. 47-year-old Farbrace is the current England assistant coach and took temporary charge for their recent victory over the Kiwis at Lord's. The pair worked together during Bayliss' time in charge of Sri Lanka, who he guided to a World Cup final.
Andrew Strauss, England's director of cricket, is believed to have favoured Bayliss for the coaching role. He was no doubt impressed not only by his success with the Sri Lankan national side in the past, but also by his previous involvement in winning the IPL, Australian Big Bash and Australia's Sheffield Shield.
Delighted with the new role
On receiving news of his appointment, the generally understated Bayliss stated that it was "an honour to be appointed England coach" and that the side "has a bright future" in his eyes.