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T20 influence making cricket more entertaining, says Kirsten

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MUSCAT: The twenty20 format has revolutionised cricket with the par score for One-Day Internationals also going to another level, opined South African cricket great Gary Kirsten.

In an exclusive interview with Oman Observer, the former coach of India and South Africa said the Twenty20 influence had done nothing bad to the game.

“In the purest form of the game, you want to have a good competition between the bat and ball. With all the influence and change to stroke-making that was affected by the T20 format, the game still has the classical trait of fair competition,” the former left-handed opener for South Africa said on the sidelines of Gary Kirsten Cricket (GKC) clinic at the Oman Cricket Academy in Al Amerat.

“The teams are confident of taking 20 wickets in a Test match after posting a good first innings total. Now, the Test matches have also gone to raise the level in terms of entertainment with aggressive brand of cricket from the teams.”

On a query about the impact of personal life’s discipline for a sports person, Kirsten said it reflects in the game too.

“It’s about the value you share in your life. The way one conducts his life also does have an impact in the sporting career as well. With discipline you will be able to make an impression and progress to success,” he said.

Winning the World Cup with India remains Kirsten’s top moment in the coaching career.

“It was a great period with the Indian team and finally winning the World Cup. Great experience for me in the role as a coach,” Kirsten, who coached India to World Cup glory in 2011, said.

The South African had also won the Indian Premier League title with Gujarat Titans in their debut tournament in 2022.

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At present, Gary said he is fully focused on his Gary Kirsten Cricket academy and has no plans to coach any national teams on a full-scale basis.

“I am focused on my academy (GKC) at present. I have no ambition to coach any national teams on a full-scale basis,” Kirsten, who was among the front-runners for an England coaching role earlier, said.

The cricketing mentor said it is important that parents of the young sportspersons remain educated about the sport and its demands.

“Getting parents educated about the sport makes them better persons to intervene in the sports careers of their children. Our academy focuses on such aspects,” Kirsten said.


Earlier, Kirsten interacted with the parents during a talk session on the role of parents in sports at the Oman Cricket Academy.

“The parents should not be emotional while handling the sports performance of their children. Instead they should take a sensible approach of bringing out the best in the children by making them work hard towards the goals,” the South African great told the parents.

“The parents should be able to make a right intervention in the sports careers of their children if needed. For that, they should be better educated with the different aspects of the sport as well.”

Kirsten in his message to the upcoming cricketers in Oman called on to continue their passion.

“This game needs patience and it takes time to settle in with some good performances. If you love the game, continue the passion. Work well consistently to achieve your dreams.”

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