Wed, Jan 27, 2010 - Page 19 News List

Arthur ends tenure as coach of South Africa cricket team


South African coach Mickey Arthur has resigned in the wake of the team’s failure to beat England in a recent Test series.

Arthur and Cricket South Africa chief executive Gerald Majola will address a press conference in East London, today.

A South African newspaper report claimed yesterday that Arthur had resigned after a meeting with Cricket SA management to discuss South Africa’s performances against England. The tourists beat South Africa in a rain-hit one-day series and drew a four-match Test series.

Arthur was appointed in 2005, originally on a two-year contract. But his contract was extended several times and he was due to guide the side until 2012.

The highlights of Arthur’s tenure were Test series wins in England and Australia in 2008. South Africa achieved the official No. 1 ranking in both Test and one-day cricket during his time in charge.

But after those highs, South Africa lost a home series against Australia, failed to reach the knock-out stage of the ICC Champions Trophy in South Africa and then performed only spasmodically against England.

Arthur forged a close relationship with South African captain Graeme Smith.

In an article for last year’s South African Cricket Annual Arthur said he saw himself and Smith as a leadership package, “with me as a sort of board chairman and Graeme as the CEO. Graeme and I had to be on exactly the same page.”

Signs of cracks in the relationship became evident during the Test series against England, particularly after South Africa were beaten in Durban.

“We need to be quite precise in terms of the things we need to improve on in terms of training sessions and coaching,” Smith said at the time.

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