Jason Gillespie has not officially been approached to be England’s next cricket coach – but it may simply be a matter of time before he is announced as Australia’s Ashes threat.
The former Australian fast bowler remains the heavy favourite to be handed the enormous task of turning around English cricket in time for the highly-anticipated Ashes series against the country for which he took 259 Test wickets.
Gillespie, who has been pinpointed by incoming England director of cricket Andrew Strauss as “one of the candidates”, dodged a large press gathering after his county champions Yorkshire completed a comprehensive win on Wednesday as speculation mounted over his future.
Instead, Yorkshire director of cricket Martyn Moxon fronted the media in his place, explaining there had not yet been an official approach from the England and Wales Cricket Board – but that he didn’t expect it would be long before Gillespie was coaching on the international scene.
“There’s nothing really he can say, because he’s had no official approach from the ECB,” Moxon said on Wednesday.
“Obviously Andrew Strauss has said that they’re interested in speaking to him.
“(But) at the moment they haven’t (and) they haven’t asked us to speak to him.”
One thing is clear – Moxon rates Gillespie, who took Yorkshire to the championship title last year, very highly and he understands why Strauss has jotted him down as a key target for the vacant coaching role.
“I think as far as international coaching is concerned, it will be `when’ rather than `if’,” he said of Gillespie.
“It’s great for him personally to be linked with the England job.
“But from a purely selfish point of view, we obviously hope Jason will stay with us
“…anybody worth their salt has ambitions and ultimately to work in international cricket, probably.
“Whether this is the right job for Jason or whether he’d be offered this job we don’t know at this moment in time.
“He’s a very talented coach … and has a great rapport with the lads. He’s a great communicator.”
While Gillespie remains the favourite, two more Australians, Justin Langer and Tom Moody, are also viewed as potential candidates.
Strauss has indicated he wants the new coach hired in time for the Ashes, which starts on July 8, while caretaker coach Paul Fabrace is in charge for the preceding New Zealand series, but is not considered a leading contender for the role long-term.