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Phil Simmons appointed 'specialist coach' of Papua New Guinea for T20 World Cup 2024

Papua New Guinea are participating in the upcoming edition of the T20 World Cup that will start from June 1. They are playing in the competition for the first time having qualified from the East Asia Pacific Qualifiers and will be locking horns against co-hosts West Indies too.

Written By: Aditya Kukalyekar @adikukalyekar New Delhi Updated on: May 20, 2024 16:28 IST
T20 World Cup 2024
Image Source : GETTY Phil Simmons

Former West Indies head coach Phil Simmons has joined Papua New Guinea as a 'specialist coach' for the upcoming T20 World Cup edition. Simmons was at the helm when the Caribbeans won the T20 title in 2016 in India and also served his second stint with the team that lasted until the group stage exit of the team in T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia.

However, Simmons has been very much active in franchise cricket coaching Trinbago Knight Riders, LA Knight Riders and Karachi Kings. In the PNG dugout, he will lend support to head coach Tatenda Taibu who is the former Zimbabwe captain and wicketkeeper. Simmons is looking forward to spending quality time with the PNG cricketers even as Cricket PNG release confirming that his appointment is a result of his experience of coaching in local conditions.

"My role here is as a consultant coach and [will be about] how I put across my experience, not just playing in World Cups but playing in the Caribbean and the things that we should be looking at to make sure we do it right in the Caribbean and especially the venues that we play at. As a player internationally, for fourteen years and then as an international coach for eighteen years, it's been a long time in the game. It's always brilliant to come home, always brilliant to come back to any part of the West Indies. You know how beautiful it is here. I'm looking forward to getting home, which is Trinidad.

"Their energy is unbelievable: their warm-up alone yesterday got me tired. The guys look like they have settled in really well… I've known the head coach for a long time and he's always energetic. There is always a lot of energy, but the players seem to be pushing him where that is not so, and I like that atmosphere in the team," Simmons said.

PNG, meanwhile, have been drawn in Group C for the T20 World Cup alongside co-hosts West Indies, New Zealand, Uganda, and Afghanistan. They are scheduled to play official warm-up fixtures against Oman and Namibia in Trinidad and Tobago on May 27 and May 30 respectively.

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