Cricket

Toyana named Lions coach

2012-07-10 12:30
Geoffrey Toyana (File)
Johannesburg - Geoffrey Toyana made history on Tuesday when he was unveiled as the first black African coach of a top-flight South African cricket team.

Toyana takes over the reins at the Highveld Lions after his predecessor, Dave Nosworthy, resigned last month.

“I am delighted and humbled and hope it’s an example to others in the townships,” Toyana said.

“It shows that if you work hard, good things can happen for you.”

Toyana, 38, hails from Soweto and played provincial cricket for Gauteng, Easterns and the Titans.

After retiring, he was appointed head coach at the Easterns Cricket Union before he joined the Lions set-up as assistant coach to Nosworthy in August 2011.

He was also the assistant coach of the SA Emerging Players team and worked with the SA Under-19s and SA 'A' side.

While the Lions have struggled to win trophies over the last few years, Toyana said he had inherited a solid, experienced squad and hoped to turn things around.

“I am very lucky I am walking into a structure that has already been set up, so there won’t be many changes,” he said.

“The biggest thing for me is to try and create an environment where players can grow.”

Toyana will be part of the Lions’ cricket committee and he was not too concerned about the rumours that Nosworthy had resigned over selection issues.

“I am very close with the board and have regular meetings with them so I don’t see any issues there,” he said.

“I learned a lot from Dave, in terms of selection and budgets, but my focus will be mainly on the field.”

While he admitted the board was still pulling in different directions, Lions CEO Cassim Dockrat believed the team was a coherent unit with an excellent support staff.

“Geoff is well staffed and Dave’s vast experience of management and administration skills have rubbed off.

“In terms of purely cricket techniques, he also had a lot of influence and there will be a great amount of continuity in that direction.”

Dockrat said the decision to appoint Toyana was unanimous as he came with a wealth of experience and talent and had played at the highest level in provincial cricket.

“He has been part and parcel of this region and of the development of cricket both as a player and a coach," Dockrat said.

“He has played a major role in making sure that the pipeline of cricketers, from both advantaged and previously disadvantaged areas, ensured a constant flow from amateur to professional level.

“For this reason, we decided not to advertise the position and to take someone from within the folds of Lions cricket.”

NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
9 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • SS3
    Tue, 29 Jul 2014 @
    04:00
  • SS4
    Tue, 29 Jul 2014 @
    05:00
  • SS5
    Tue, 29 Jul 2014 @
    05:59
  • SS7
    Tue, 29 Jul 2014 @
    06:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

 
 
Featured Blog

Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs
Vote

Which cricketer is currently of most value to the Proteas' Test team?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.