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I am here only to observe: Kirsten
Harish Kotian in Bangalore | December 07, 2007 21:13 IST
Last Updated: December 07, 2007 22:24 IST
India's new coach Gary Kirsten arrived in Bangalore on Friday evening on a three-day visit to interact with the Indian team.
Though Kirsten will officially take charge in March 2008, his priority is getting to know the team better. The South African will be with the team for three days during the Bangalore Test and interact with the players and support staff.
"I still don't have a plan in place. I'm here only to observe. I just want to watch their game and see how they play. Also another reason why I came down is to know the players and understand them. I have always played against them, but now I will be a part of the set-up," he said.
Kirsten added that he would join the Indian team for around 3-4 weeks after Christmas because of prior commitments.
"I will not travel to Australia during Christmas, but after that I intend to spend a fair amount of time, say about 3-4 weeks, with the team in Australia," he said.
The 40-year-old said he is also looking forward to have mental conditioning coach Paddy Upton on the team's support staff.
"The mental side of cricket is a very important aspect. As for Paddy Upton joining the team, nothing is finalised yet," he added.
A decision on whether the former South Africa opener's family would join him in India will be taken soon.
"I'm going to miss my family. We haven't worked out anything about them joining me in India, but they will spend as much time as they can here," he said.
Kirsten, who also runs an academy in Cape Town, said it is an honour to take over as the coach of India.
"It is an honour to be a part of the Indian culture, especially in the cricket perspective. Judging by the welcome I've received on my arrival, I know there is going to be a lot of pressure on me, but pressure is a part and parcel of international sport. I am prepared to face it," he said.