Bojé leads VKB Knights

2015-11-04 12:38
APPOINTED: Nicky Bojé.             Photo: Graham Chadwick

APPOINTED: Nicky Bojé. Photo: Graham Chadwick

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IT was the last innings for VKB Knights coach, Sarel Cilliers, on Sunday, 25 October, when his side took on the Bizhub Highveld Lions at Senwes Park, Potchefstroom, in a Momentum One-Day Cup match.

Appropriately, Cilliers ended his 26-year first-class career on the same ground on which he started it in 1989.

He will be succeeded on an interim basis by former Proteas all-rounder Nicky Bojé with a permanent appointment to be made in May 2016.

After beginning his coaching career with the u.17 Free State side, Cilliers served as fitness trainer under Andy Moles from 2000 to 2001 and under Corrie van Zyl for the Free State in 2002. Cilliers served as Knights fitness trainer and later as assistant coach to Corrie van Zyl from 2003 to 2009.

He was appointed head coach of the Knights in 2009.

Johan van Heerden, chief executive officer of Central Franchise, expressed his sadness with the departure of Cilliers.

“It is very sad to say goodbye to Sarel. Thank you for what you did for the Free State Cricket Union and the Eagles and Knights. You were a fantastic professional and an example to any professional cricketer,” said Van Heerden.

Bojé will take charge of the Knights for his first game when they travel to PPC Newlands to take on the Warriors in the first Ram Slam T20 challenge match of the season.

As a cricketer, Bojé played 43 tests and 115 one-day internationals as an all-rounder for South Africa between 1995 and 2006. He had match-winning analyses in both India and Sri Lanka to finally establish him as the number-one test spin bowler in 2000-’01.

He had a big role to play in the final test of the New Zealand tour of 2003-’04, when his eight-wicket haul helped South Africa to a series-levelling win.

He finished his international career with 100 test wickets.

He went on to play in the Indian Champions League and in 2008, was appointed captain of Northamptonshire. In that season, he recorded his highest ever first-class cricket score of 226.

He returned to the Knights from 2010-’11 until 2013-’14 and continued his passion for cricket when he was appointed as head coach for the Free State Cricket Union Academy in 2014.

Bojé will fulfil his role as head coach for the VKB Knights until the end of April 2016, with the new permanent appointment effective from May 2016.

“Nicky had played the game at all levels, understands the challenges of an international cricketer and could bring a wealth of knowledge to the young cricketers still developing their game. We trust Nicky will enjoy the challenge,” said Van Heerden.

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