Cricket-Zimbabwe coach laments loss of support staff

Fri Feb 8, 2013 7:22pm IST

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Feb 8 (Reuters) - Zimbabwe coach Alan Butcher has expressed disappointment at a decision to leave batting coach Grant Flower, bowling coach Heath Streak and fitness trainer Lorraine Chivandire at home for the team's tour of West Indies.

"I am disappointed because they have been a big part of our preparations," Butcher told Reuters in a telephone interview.

"Lorraine has worked really hard to improve the players' fitness. It's a pity. I think it will be a disadvantage for the players.

"If it is a question of finances then I accept that, but those are not the reasons given in the media."

Captain Brendan Taylor has called the decision "steps in the wrong direction".

Butcher, 59, who played one test for England, said the West Indies' trip would be his last tour before he leaves his post after three years in charge of the national team.

"They have interviewed already for the post but I didn't look to continue. It is more for personal reasons, I have been away from my family for the best part of three years," he said.

"I would have loved to continue working with the players, but it would have been difficult to spend more time away.

"I leave the national side in a better place, 90 percent of the players have improved in a technical sense. I would like to think that I have benefited Zimbabwe cricket."

Zimbabwe will play two tests, three ODIs and two T20 matches on their tour, starting on Feb. 20 with a warmup match in Grenada. (Reporting by Nick Said in Cape Town; Editing by John Mehaffey)

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