Former Sri Lanka captain and legendary cricketer Mahela Jayawardene will perform the role of head coach for Khulna Titans in the next two BPL T20 seasons.
managed to get a hold of the stylish batsman for an exclusive interview where he shared his thoughts and vision as the coach of the Titans.
Here is the first half of the two-part interview.
You played for Dhaka Dynamites in the last BPL. How did you get in touch with Khulna and what prompted you to become the head coach of the franchise?
Dhaka was a good experience. We enjoyed a lot. After that, when I decided I won’t play, Khulna approached me some time back. I had discussions with them. I had second thoughts because of my schedule but eventually I thought it would be a good challenge as I played last year and seen how Khulna played last year. I realised they have good potential and are great bunch of people. The set-up looks similar and I was quite happy to take on the challenge.
Are you impressed with the professionalism shown by the Khulna franchise?
It's great, very professional, and they understand what the game and tournament is all about so it’s easier to work around that. I think it’s going to be fun and exciting time for me as the coach of Khulna.
What is your take on the foreign players recruited by Khulna?
Good choices of foreign players. We are trying to plan how we want to build the team and the auction will give us more opportunity to try and get more local and talented players as well. But the players we bought are highly skilled and experienced players who will contribute and help immensely to the team and who fits in to the culture that we are trying to create here.
After you tasted success with Mumbai Indians, will it be a challenge for you to continue the success as a coach?
Not really as I said I don’t take it like that as every tournament is a challenge but I don’t take anything for granted. But it’s a fresh start and the success with Mumbai was great. And that’s due to the support from the players and management for the cause. I was just part of that and I am trying to create the same culture here and see how far we can go as we don’t want to put any added pressure. We are not thinking that we have to win the title. Rather we are looking to play our best cricket. We will focus on the thought process and execute our game plan.
Do you think local players will be key for Khulna this season?
Huge because obviously if you see the tournament, local players will be the key whether it's six or seven in the XI. They will play a vital part in the structure so I think they are massive.