Touring India not a suicide mission: South Africa team director

Enoch Nkwe is upbeat ahead of facing the number one ranked Test side

Touring India not a suicide mission: South Africa team director PHOTO: Cricket South Africa

South Africa’s interim team director Enoch Nkwe says he is upbeat ahead of his side’s upcoming tough tour of India.

Nkwe replaces West Indian Ottis Gibson, the previous head coach, for the trip which starts in September and includes three Tests and three Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is).

The 36-year-old, though, has had coaching spells as assistant with the Netherlands national side, on the Canadian T20 circuit and with the South African ‘A’ side, including a tour to India, and argues he has enough know-how to take the team forward.

“I don’t feel it is a suicide mission (in India),” he told reporters in a press conference on Thursday. “As a coach I strongly believe that every challenge is an opportunity. As management we need to create the right environment as soon as possible.”

“I have just been in Canada working with some of the best T20 players in the world. Being someone that is always open to new experiences and learning, the last year has been massive in my coaching career and as a person,” he added.

Inexperienced Nkwe handed South Africa coaching role

Nkwe will be backed up by batting, bowling and fielding coaches who are expected to be former players with experience of playing or working in India.

“I will take full responsibility for how things unfold in India, but I like to create the environment where each coach has a say, learns and grows,” he said.

South Africa start the tour with the limited-overs matches, the first in Dharamsala on September 15.

The tests follow in Visakhapatnam (October 2-6), Pune (October 10-14) and Ranchi (October 19-23), the first for the team in the newly-formed ICC Test Championship.