Johan Botha named head coach of Brisbane Heat , Queensland Bulls on 3-year deal

Sports |  IANS  | Published :

Brisbane, May 14 (IANS) Former South African cricketer Johan Botha has been appointed as the new head coach of Big Bash League club Brisbane Heat and Australia domestic cricket team Queensland Bulls for the next three years.

Botha's role as head coach comes after Wade Seccombe's departure, who resigned from his role after being asked to re-apply for both jobs following an end-of-season review.

The 42-year-old South African was an assistant coach for the Strikers in BBL season 12 and was head coach of the Sharjah Warriors in the ILT20 2024 and assistant coach for the Seattle Orcas in the inaugural Major League Cricket (MLC) 2023 competition in the USA.

Botha has previously been head coach of the Multan Sultans, Karachi Kings, and Islamabad United in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) and Guyana in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

"There is a lot to look forward to for Queensland Cricket and I can’t wait to hit the ground running in what will be an exciting and fulfilling challenge,’’ said Botha on Tuesday. "This is an incredible opportunity with the playing talent and experience that the two squads will be able to call upon.

"The Bulls have strong ties to success, and I have no doubt the playing group already aspire to be deeply competitive this summer. The Heat were skilful and professional on the way to their BBL title and have an enviable base to pursue new challenges in the coming seasons,” he added.

After moving to Adelaide in 2012 to play full-time for South Australia, Botha's international career with South Africa was essentially over. He has played five Tests, 78 ODIs, 40 T20Is, and captained his nation in 21 white-ball matches. Botha is an Australian citizen.

He led South Australia in the Sheffield Shield and Marsh Cup for two years before stepping down in the middle of the 2014–15 campaign to make room for Travis Head.

Botha has participated in 71 BBL games with the Adelaide Strikers, Sydney Sixers, and Hobart Hurricanes, giving him a plenty of playing experience. He left the game early in 2019 to accept a coaching position in the PSL, but he returned as a stand-in for the Covid-ravaged 2020–21 season.

Test legend and Queensland Cricket (QC) director Ian Healy was part of the interview panel along with QC CEO Terry Svenson and QC Head of Elite Cricket Joe Dawes who identified Botha as the preferred candidate for the role, with senior Bulls and Heat players also consulted.

"We’re excited to announce Johan will take on the Heat and Bulls coaching roles and look forward to welcoming he and his family to Queensland. We had several high-quality applicants and Johan stood out in the interview process with his experience as an international player, and more recently as a coach, as well as his familiarity with Australian Cricket since moving here from South Africa more than a decade ago," ," said Svenson.

Joe Dawes said Botha would commence with the Heat and Bulls at the official start of pre-season training on 3 June. "Johan is a fiercely motivated and determined person and has consistently displayed those traits during his playing and coaching career,’’ he said.

"He is very much at the cutting edge of the game internationally and will bring a fresh and dynamic outlook to our organisation and especially the Bulls and championship Brisbane Heat squads," said Dawes.

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