August 23, 2020

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Neil McKenzie resigns as Bangladesh batting coach | ESPNcricinfo.com

Neil McKenzie has resigned from his position as Bangladesh’s batting coach, citing family reasons for his decision, which he conveyed to the BCB through a letter on Thursday.

“Yes, I’ve resigned, only reason being time away from the family. With Covid, the schedule, and doing all formats, the time away from my young family would be too much,” McKenzie told ESPNcricinfo. “I’ve loved being a part of the Tigers and will always have a soft spot for Bangladesh cricket and the great guys I’ve been fortunate to work with.”

McKenzie became Bangladesh’s white-ball batting consultant in July 2018 and soon became an effective instructor. He wanted his batsmen to practice “skilled hitting“, where they didn’t just go for broke, but found the right areas in the field to find the most runs. He also stressed on the value of rotating strike every ball, an issue that had often been a bugbear for Bangladesh’s batting line-ups.

McKenzie was quick to point out things that were going wrong, but was also a great defender of his players. Earlier this year, he stood up for Tamim Iqbal when the opener’s anchor role was being misinterpreted.

During McKenzie’s time, Bangladesh won the ODI series against West Indies and Zimbabwe at home, as well as winning the Ireland tri-series in May last year. Their middling form in the 2019 World Cup claimed the job of Steve Rhodes almost instantly, but ODI batting remained a confident unit under McKenzie’s supervision. Liton Das’ improvement and the emergence of Mohammad Naim were some of his most significant contributions, while Tamim and other senior batsmen had often praised his work.

During his Bangladesh tenure, McKenzie also joined Mzansi Super League franchise Jozi Stars as mentor and consultant, as his contract with the BCB was not a full-time one – he was paid for each day’s work – and he made himself available only before and during white-ball series or tournaments.

McKenzie, who worked with the Bangladesh Test side only once, during their tour of India last year, skipped the T20I series in Lahore earlier this year. He was, however, available for the home series against Zimbabwe, which was his last assignment with the team.

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