Enoch Nkwe says he will throw his name in the hat for the Proteas team director position

15 August 2019 - 15:25 By Khanyiso Tshwaku
Cricket South Africa's Interim Team Director Enoch Nkwe during a Press briefing at Cricket South Africa Head office, Johannesburg, on 15 August, 2019.
Cricket South Africa's Interim Team Director Enoch Nkwe during a Press briefing at Cricket South Africa Head office, Johannesburg, on 15 August, 2019.
Image: Christiaan Kotze/Gallo Images

Enoch Nkwe will throw his name in the hat when the search for a permanent Proteas team director begins.

Nkwe occupies the position on an interim basis and will be with the Proteas for next month's Test and T20 tour of India.

“I'll definitely throw my name in the hat.

"Yes there's a process that needs to be followed and I'll have to apply.

"Hopefully I do get the opportunity to lead my country on a permanent basis‚” Nkwe said.

“How do you say no to a national call-up?

"As a player‚ it's something you dream of achieving and as a coach‚ you want to lead your country in some sort of capacity.

"When this opportunity came‚ I couldn't say no and it really excited me. I'm extremely motivated and excited.

"I didn't expect it to come so soon‚ but I've always been the type to stretch myself on a yearly basis of being ready for an opportunity.

"If I really felt that I wasn't ready for this opportunity‚ I would've said no.”

Nkwe won three trophies with the Highveld Lions (Franchise T20 Challenge and Four-Day Franchise Series) and the Jozi Stars (Mzansi Super League).

The Lions‚ though‚ will have to start their Four-Day Championship title defence without their coach as South Africa will already be locking horns with India in the three-Test series.

The local four-day red-ball tournament starts on October 7.

Cricket SA's acting director of cricket Corrie van Zyl said their stance on exploring leadership options in regards with their shorter formats hasn't changed‚ even though current Test captain Faf du Plessis reportedly said that he's still the T20 captain.

Van Zyl‚ who'll also be acting as the chief selector alongside Nkwe‚ Du Plessis (Test only) and Quinton de Kock (T20's only)‚ said they're close to finding Nkwe's temporary assistants.

Du Plessis hasn't been selected for the T20 leg of the tour that starts on September 15.

“The coaching staff will be on an interim position based on Enoch's position.

"He needs be comfortable with the coaching staff that he'll be taking to India and we need to be sure the coaching staff is going to support him and give him the necessary support.

"We'll announce the group as soon as we've confirmed.

"We have one or two guys that haven't taken up the opportunity so we're still looking. Enoch‚ though‚ has clear thoughts on what he wants and who he wants‚” Van Zyl said.

“We are looking for options in white ball cricket going forward. We don't know whether Faf will be around until 2023.

"We need to look at that and nothing has changed from that perspective.”

SA's previous sojourn to India in 2015 was a chastening one‚ with the visitors losing all three out of four Tests by heavy margins.

The pitches‚ especially in Mohali (first Test) and Nagpur (third Test)‚ spun square from day one and proved difficult to bat on for both teams.

SA‚ though‚ did well in the limited overs leg of that tour with wins in the T20 and the ODI series.

Nkwe acknowledged that the tour would be tough‚ but said it's a challenge he's welcoming with both hands.

“Having worked with some of the players at different levels‚ it puts me in a good position because those players do understand my thinking and how I do things‚" he said.

"Going on this tour‚ it's going to be tough and I understand that but I look at every challenge as an opportunity and I'm grateful for that.

"I understand it's going to be a really big challenge but I really believe that we can make an immediate impact.

"If it doesn't happen‚ it's not the end of the world because there's a bigger picture to everything.

“I've been in India before with the South Africa “A” team and there were lessons from there that we can take into this tour.

"There were some players who were there who are part of this group.”