Gary Kirsten at the Zayed Cricket stadium in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday. Image Credit: Ahmed Kutty/Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: India’s World Cup winning coach Gary Kirsten has joined force with Abu Dhabi Cricket for the development of local talent in the UAE.

The South African, who runs Gary Kirsten Cricket around the globe, has struck a two-year contract and will support Abu Dhabi Cricket’s masterplan to increase the capacity inside the Zayed Cricket Academy.

“I have come here a few times to the UAE region. I played a fair amount of cricket here and a couple of tournaments in Sharjah.

“I have watched this place grow from a cricketing perspective for a number of years. And then when I started working with the Indian team, Dubai was always a stopping point. So I was always in this area,” said Kirsten, who just a week ago also opened his academy in Pune, India.

“When I finished with the Indian team, I set up my coaching school. I was always fascinated by the interest in the game in this region.

“To have an opportunity to come and do some work in Abu Dhabi and join up in a partnership with Abu Dhabi Cricket, it’s very exciting and we are really looking forward to it,” said Kirsten, who has one of his coach staff — Oscar Nouhous already working for Abu Dhabi Cricket for over two months. “Obviously being involved in Indian cricket and extending it to the IPL, I think there is a massive Indian community here and I’m really excited.”

Matthew Boucher, acting CEO of Abu Dhabi Cricket, speaking on the occasion said: “The focus will be more on that junior sport element like we have done before by bringing that element of real world class professionalism.

“We have signed a two-year contract until the end of next year inclusive of some camps for both Abu Dhabi and international high performance camp in October as Gary Kirsten Master Class for high performance youngsters.”