An Emotional outgoing India coach Gary Kirsten said bidding adieu to the team he has nurtured for three years is one of the hardest goodbyes he has ever had to say but is satisfied to leave Indian cricket in a “healthy” state.
“It has been one of the hardest good byes I have had to say,” Kirsten told reporters in his farewell press conference after serving out a successful term during which the Indian team reached the pinnacle of Test rankings besides lifting its first World Cup title in 28 years, last week.
“It has been an amazing achievement to be a part of this special group of cricketers,” he said.Kirsten came into the job with no coaching experience but turned out to be the most successful for India and the South African said having no prior experience probably worked to his advantage.
“I think it was interesting to come into this job without any coaching experience. I used the reference of being a player to work with the team. I tried building trust in the environment. Me and Paddy (Upton) tried to make sure that they knew that we had come to India to make it the best team in the world,” he said.
Kirsten, who declined an offer to extend his tenure, said he has no plans to take up any other coaching assignment as of now and wants to spend time with his family.
“I am going home to spend some time with my family. But I have to consider my future at some time. I have been fortunate to have been offered some jobs but I want to spend time with my family right now,” he said.
The Indian team performed consistently well under his guidance and Kirsten said there is hardly any area to improve upon from here except for fielding, which has also bettered in the past few months.
“They are the number one Test team in the world and won the World Cup so there is nothing much to improve. We have been working really hard on fielding and I was quite amazed at the way we fielded in the last three games of the World Cup,” he said referring to the improved standards of fielding in the Indian team’s knockout stage campaign.