The churning continues at Mohali-based Indian Premier League franchise, Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), with former Australia pacer Ryan Harris taking over as the new bowling coach, replacing Venkatesh Prasad, who assumed duties during the 2018 edition of the cash-rich tournament.
KXIP, who finished a disappointing seventh during the 2018 edition of the tournament, reacted to the performance by making wholesale changes to the support structure of the franchise. Mike Hesson replaced the incumbent Brad Hodge and the former New Zealand coach has now brought in his own team, ahead of the 12th edition of the tournament, preparations for which will begin with the annual player auctions – due to be held on December 18, in Jaipur.
Besides Harris, KXIP have also roped in New Zealand’s Craig McMillan (fielding coach), Brett Harrop (physio), Sridharan Sriram (batting coach) and Prasanna Raman (high-performance coach).
“Having quality coaches like Harris and McMillan will be a great asset to the team. They have both performed as players on the big stage and have made the transition into quality coaches. They will be excellent additions to the coaching team,” coach Hesson said on the new appointments.
Having started promisingly, KXIP lost their way in the second half of the 2018 tournament, eventually costing Brad Hodge his job after the season – despite having signed up on a two-year deal. He was followed by Virender Sehwag, Mentor and Head of Cricket Operations, while Venkatesh Prasad resigned as the bowling coach shortly after.
Ahead of the 2019 season, KXIP ran in several changes, with as many as 11 players (9 Indians, 2 overseas) released from their contracts. They were also involved in the pre-auction transfer season and traded Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis for Indian batsman, Mandeep Singh, with Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).