Ashley Giles said on Friday that England could appoint an interim head coach for their tour of New Zealand. Trevor Bayliss stepped down as England coach after the Ashes series against Australia earlier this month. Replacing the Australian won’t be easy after his impressive reign brought England their first 50-over World Cup triumph in July. England will play two Tests and five Twenty20s in New Zealand, which start on November 1 with the Test series ending in early December.
“When we go to the shortlist and interviews, it depends on their circumstances and there will be different circumstances with all these coaches, so if we have to go interim, we will,” ECB director of cricket Giles told reporters on Friday.
“I’m not going to talk about who that will be now. Hopefully we won’t have to, but that bit is less important than getting the right man for the next four years.”
England have not advertised the position, with Giles instead gathering interest before a final shortlist is drawn up. “There’s some strong candidates out there. You’ll know them, I’m not going to go through the list and who is favourite and whatever,” he said.
“There’s some internal, some English and some very good overseas. I’m looking forward to it and it’s a big appointment.”
Giles was England’s limited-overs head coach between November 2012 and April 2014, with Andy Flower head coach of the Test team for the majority of that time. He thinks moving forward with one head coach for both formats of cricket is the best approach, with no potential conflict over certain players needing to be rested or coaches with different styles and experience.
“I think having one voice is important, but accepting that one voice is going to need some time away from the environment and if you’ve got three very good assistants, it’s an opportunity to develop them as leaders,” Giles said.
“And again, it’s a consistent voice of sorts because the players will know them, so that’s how I see it.”
Giles also confirmed that Eoin Morgan would continue as captain of the limited-overs team, with the focus on the Twenty20 World Cup in Australia next year and has given his “full support” to Test skipper Joe Root. It was a summer to remember for Morgan, leading England to their maiden 50-over World Cup win and although Root played a key role in that success, he was unable to reclaim the Ashes after the series finished 2-2.
“We met probably about a month after the World Cup final and he wanted some time to consider his future, which is just the way Morgs operates,” Giles said.
“He’s very sensible, very logical and thankfully he rang me a couple of weeks after that and said ‘I’m absolutely fully committed to going forward and looking forward to it refreshed’.”
Giles is excited for Root to work with a new head coach and create a plan to win back the Ashes in Australia for the 2021-22 series. “I think Joe needs a coach who is going to offer him a bit more structure and a bit more discipline,” he said.
“I don’t mean discipline with the stick, but a bit more organisation and really work with him on what the DNA of that team is going forwards and what they want to achieve, so it is a tricky balance.”
“We need to address the balance between red and white-ball cricket,” Giles told the Press Association.
“When we appoint a new head coach, it’s a good chance for those guys to sit down even with me and even the selectors and map out what the future looks like and the sort of cricket we want to play as a Test team.”
“The way the central contracts are lined up, with 10 Test contracts and 12 white-ball, does not mean white-ball is more important,” Giles said.
“But there is more room for manoeuvre in red-ball contracts and places up for grabs, so good opportunities for people and a chance for them to take them.”