Cricket South Africa has named Siya Sibiya as the new South Africa U19 assistant coach ahead of the upcoming tour to India in February 2019.
The aspiring Proteas will take on their sub-continent counterparts in Youth Test and Youth One-Day Internationals from 16 February to 12 March 2019. Sibiya takes over the role from Wandile Gwavu, who vacated the post in July last year to take up an assistant coaching role to Enoch Nkwe at the Highveld Lions.
Born in Kwa-Dukuza in Kwa-Zulu Natal, Sibiya began his coaching career at Western Province Cricket Association (WPCA) before moving to the Central Gauteng Lions at the beginning of the current season, where he went on to lead the U19s side to success at the 2018 Coca-Cola Khaya Majola Week.
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‘He’s been a part of our structures for a long time, so this is well-deserved,’ commented Corrie van Zyl, CSA General Manager. ‘Siya is one of the young coaches who has gone through our development structures, from the HUBS systems through to the Talent Acceleration Programmes (TAP) and the Academy sides. So, it is pleasing to see the fruits of our coaching programmes come to bear.
‘He has a bright future in the game, and I am sure the team will be very delighted to have Siya as a part of the set-up,’ added Van Zyl.
Sibiya comes into a familiar environment, having worked with SA u19 head coach, Lawrence Mahatlane and the national development coaches at various camps, including the 2017 National under-17 TAP camp held at Centre of Excellence in Pretoria.
The 31-year-old has mentored several players that have gone on to play at franchise level including Lesiba Ngoepe, Kyle Verreynne and recently capped Test batsman Zubayr Hamza.
‘Siya is a young man but he has quite a reputation in the Cape, where he has done a lot of good work over the years, particularly in Cape Town,’ said Mahatlane. ‘This is an opportunity for him to hopefully grow as a coach and share in some of our experiences.
‘As the head coach, I always want to know what my coaches will do differently or what we can put together. I think it is important to have different views and opinions on many situations to be able to get the best out of the players and the team,’ added Mahatlane.
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On his appointment, Sibiya credits the systems in place at CSA for helping him throughout his brief career and paving the way for him to constantly improve his skills.
‘First of all, I want to give credit to CSA and the structures in place,’ noted Sibiya. ‘One of the key factors that helped me was being a HUB coach at Primrose Cricket Club, where I learnt to not only improve my coaching but also the administrative side.
‘A lot of credit should go to David Mokopanele, CSA Mass Participation Manager and the HUB programme for the work they do. I hope my story can be an inspiration for all the framework coaches within that system. It is not impossible,’ he concluded.
South Africa U19 squad
Matthew Montgomery (captain, Dolphins)
Luke Beaufort (Warriors)
Jonathan Bird (Cape Cobras)
Achille Cloete (Cape Cobras)
Gerald Coetzee (Knights)
Marco Jansen (Highveld Lions)
Thamsanqa Khumalo (Dolphins)
Bonga Makaka (Cape Cobras)
Andile Mogakane (Dolphins)
Kgaudise Molefe (Highveld Lions)
Lifa Ntanzi (Dolphins)
Bryce Parsons (Highveld Lions)
Siya Plaatjie (Cape Cobras)
Ruan Terblanche (Cape Cobras)
Nonelela Yikha (Warriors)
Photo: Cricket South Africa