Robin Brown sacked, community outraged

Posted by admin on August 08, 2008

Rumours have been circulating the internet regarding the future of national team coach Robin Brown, with Cricinfo and the Zimbabwe Independent both running stories about his sacking.

There has been no official confirmation from Zimbabwe Cricket, so the rumours could still turn out to be false, or - if true - there is still time for ZC to do some serious backpedalling.

By all accounts, Zimbabwe A coach Andy Pycroft has also lost his job.

Cricinfo reports that the Takashinga cricket club never "got along" with Brown, and were the force behind Brown's removal. They also accused Brown of showing bias towards the few remaining white players in the team, which most people agree is an utterly false accusation.

An unnamed ZC official told the Zimbabwe Independent, "We did not fire him. We just did not renew his contract. The issue is his bad working relationship with the players. He also treats players differently. We decided were not going anywhere with him."

Brown played 66 First Class games and 7 ODI's for Zimbabwe and was captain of the team during the early 80's. He was in the twilight of his career when the country achieved Test status. He won his first international match as team coach, with a historic 5 wicket win over world champions Australia in the ICC World Twenty20. He also won his ODI as coach, with a defeat over West Indies at Harare Sports Club.

One of the players told the Zimbabwe Independent that "There were no major issues with Robin in the players’ camp", while a former player told Cricinfo that "All the home-grown candidates have either been tried or turned their backs. Nobody with any credibility from overseas would touch the job, so you wonder who on earth they will turn to."

The leading candidate at the moment to replace Brown are Walter Chawaguta, Steven Mangongo and Alistair Campbell. Chawaguta has played 6 First Class matches without ever representing Zimbabwe, while Mangongo has limited cricket experience, having played no matches.

Campbell - a veteran of 60 Tests and 188 ODI's for Zimbabwe between 1992 and 2003, scoring 9 centuries - is arguably the leading contender, having been tipped by many to become head coach since before the 2007 World Cup.