A breakdown of the questions you voted on will appear here.
Pulse connects you to the
Get closer to the this season by using Pulse while you watch the LIVE matches. Pulse asks you a range of questions relevant to the LIVE action as it unfolds. Your votes will be featured in the telecast in real-time and debated by the commentators, players and stars. If you've got a great question of your own, we'd love to hear it.
He propelled India to the top of the Test rankings in 2009, helped them lift the World Cup in 2011 and then made South Africa the best Test team in the world. Gary Kirsten has established himself as one of the best cricket coaches of all time. And now he has embarked on a new road in his coaching journey, joining the Delhi Daredevils as their head coach.
The 2014 Player Auction was Kirsten’s christening as the coach of an IPL team and thus he was introduced to the riveting territory of world’s most popular Twenty20 tournament. The action in the auction room prepared Kirsten for the excitement in store when the tournament begins.
Here’s what Kirsten told iplt20.com as he took charge of the Delhi Daredevils.
Does this feel a bit like homecoming?
It is actually and it’s nice to be back. I have some very fond memories of India from my three years with the Indian team. I always anticipated that I will be back here. I’ve enjoyed my time in this country. It is nice to be part of the IPL and be involved with Indian cricket again.
How was the auction as a means to start your IPL journey?
It was quite a weird process for me, it was an interesting experience and a very different one from those I have ever had. It was nice to be part of the action between sport and business. I am looking forward to working with a squad of players coming from different countries who all play their cricket very differently. I am looking forward to managing a team of different kinds of players.
How did this appointment come about?
It started with a phone call from my good friend Eric Simons, who was the head coach of Delhi Daredevils. He rang me up and asked what I would be doing after my contract with the Proteas ended. I said I’m not sure and he asked me if I would be interested in joining him at Delhi Daredevils. I said I would and that’s how the conversation began.
A very crucial part of your coaching style is building a personal rapport with players and taking them into confidence. You will not have that time with a team that gathers for a few months in a year. How will that aspect change your coaching method?
Yes, I will have to go about that part very quickly. One thing about the IPL is that it is a very intense competition and you have got to build a team culture. Yes, the time will be less but it can be done. I will have to go about it in a different way. The opportunity to create something within a team is exciting.
How much will your experience with Team India help you manage an IPL team?
It will make a huge difference. In fact, even with the Proteas we had players from five different cultures, so I am used to managing a varied dressing room and working in a cross culture atmosphere. I think it is very important that you understand what makes people tick in their country and how to get the best out of different individuals.
How does the definition of the word coach change when you’re in charge of such a T20 team that plays only one tournament together a year?
I don’t think it changes at all and I don’t think the word coach is a correct one for someone managing an international team. It’s more about managing people rather than coaching players.
You teamed up with Paddy Upton when you were with India and South Africa and he must have helped you a great deal in understanding the mental make-up of the players. Will you miss having him by your side this time?
I would miss him and yes, he has helped me a lot. But he had coaching aspirations and we agreed that it was a good time for us to move in different directions. We shared a great partnership for five years. I know he will add value to every dressing room. He will work with young coaches and help them go about their task. I was a young coach when I came to India and he played a crucial role in my development as a coach. He has given me a few pointers about how to manage an IPL team but he is an opposition now so he would not tell me everything.
Will Eric Simons’s presence in the DD dressing room help you ease into your role?
Yes, it was a factor behind my taking up the job. It is very important for me to have him around because he has been involved with the IPL for four years and he knows the requirements of the tournament well. I will be taking a lot of advice from him.
How is the prospect of working closely with Kevin Pietersen?
I am looking forward to working with him. He is a South African so the rapport will be easy to build. I have had chats with him and he was keen to continue playing for DD. We too wanted him to stay with us. He is a top-class player and we’re really pleased to have him.
All my friends, settle down let me talk, I'll get more and more emotional.
My life between 22 yards in the 24 years, it's hard to believe that it's coming to an end. I would like to thank all the people who have helped me in my life to get here. I have a list in my hand, please forgive me if I miss out on a few names.
First, the most important person in my life, my father. He passed away in 1999. He was key for my career. He gave me freedom at the age of 11 and told me, ‘chase your dreams and don't find shortcuts’. He also told me to be a nice human being, which I am still trying my best to be.
My mother, I don't know how she dealt with a naughty child like me. She took care of me to be healthy. She started praying for me even before I started my career and I think those prayers gave my strength.
In my school days, I used to stay with my uncle and aunt as my school was far away. They treated me like their son. When after a hard day’s cricket, I went home, I was half asleep. My aunt fed me so that I could go and play the next day.
My eldest brother, Nitin. He doesn’t like to talk much but he used to tell me, ‘I know you'd do everything right and I have the confidence in you’. My sister, she gave me my first bat. A Kashmir Willow bat. She continues to fast when I bat.
Ajit, I don't know what I should say about him. We have lived this dream together. It all started from the age of 11, when he took me to Achrekar sir my coach. He saw a spark in me and sacrificed his career for mine. And my life changed. Even last night, he called me and we were discussing my dismissal. We’ve had so many discussions and arguments. Various things we agreed upon and at times, when he said something about my technique, I didn’t agree with him. If I had not done that, I would have been a lesser cricketer.
The most important thing happened to me in 1990 when I met my wife Anjali. I knew she was a doctor and had a wonderful career ahead of her. But when we decided to make a family, she said, ‘you continue with your cricket and I'll take care of the family’. Without that I think I couldn't have played so much cricket. Thank you for bearing with my fuss, frustration and all the nonsense I have said over the years. This is the best partnership I've had in my life.
Then Sara and Arjun – the two precious diamonds in my life. My daughter is 16 and son is 14, time has flown by. I wasn't able to be with them for the birthdays, annual days and sports days. Thanks for understanding all that, both of you have been so special to me. I've not spent enough time with you but I promise you the next 16 years or even more, are all for you.
My in-laws have been supporting. I discuss various things with them, we have a strong family and I thank you for allowing me to marry Anjali. My career started at 11. My brother took me to Achrekar sir and that is the best thing to have happened to me. Sir would be taking me on his scooter all over Mumbai, from Shivaji Park to Azad Maidan to ensure that I get enough match practice.
On a lighter note, he's never said ‘well played’ to me so that I don't get complacent. Sir, you can push your luck now that I don’t have any more matches to play.
In the last 24 yrs, I made new friends, before that I had friends from childhood. Whenever I have called them to bowl to me on nets, they have left all their work aside to be with me. Even when I was injured, they were beside me. That’s when my friends have woken up at 3 in the morning just to make me believe that my career is not over yet. Life would have been incomplete without them. Thanks for being there.
My cricket started right here at this ground for Mumbai. I remember once landing from New Zealand at 4 am and playing a Ranji Trophy match at 8 am. It wasn’t that anyone forced me to do so. I played because of my love for Mumbai Cricket. The Mumbai Cricket Association has been very supportive.
The dream was obviously to play for India. BCCI was fantastic, they believed in me at the age of 16 years and selected me. Thanks for the support and the freedom to express myself in the middle. Whenever I was injured, the BCCI ensured all my treatments are taken care of so I could be fit and play again.
I have played with many senior cricketers, thanks to everyone for helping me out. I see Rahul (Dravid), VVS (Laxman) and Sourav (Ganguly) on the big screen. Also, Anil (Kumble) who is not here, and my teammates. You guys are like my family. It is going to be difficult without that dressing room, sharing those special moments.
When Dhoni gave me the 200th Test cap, I just said, we are all proud to be here as a team and I believe that you guys will continue to represent this country in the right spirit to the best of our abilities. I believe in you and all the best for your future.
I would be failing in my duty if I didn’t thank all the doctors, physios, without whose special efforts, I couldn't have been fit. I don't know how you all kept me in good shape.
My dear friend, late Mark Mascerenhas, my first manager. We lost him in a car accident in 2002. He was very passionate about my game and importantly about Indian Cricket. He ensured my cricket never suffered because of the shoots and other commitments with the sponsors.
Without him I couldn't have achieved all this. I miss you. My current manager Vinod Naidu, he's more like my family. He's given me so much time, leaving his family to do my work.
In the school days when I played well, the media backed me a lot. You've been doing that till now. Thank you to all of you, all those photographers who captured those wonderful moments that will remain with me.
I thank all the people here who have traveled from different parts of the world to just watch me. You people have always supported me whether I scored a 0 or a 100. I've met a lot of people who fast for me, pray for me and do all sorts of things for me. I thank you for all that you've done.
Especially the 'Sachinnnn... Sachin.' Chants. It will reverberate in my ears until my last breath. Thank you very much. I am sorry if I have missed out on anything. Good bye.