Aussie coach quits after series win

Australia national coach Tim Nielsen has decided to step down rather than reapply for his job, he said Tuesday, soon after the team posted a 1-0 Test series win over Sri Lanka in Colombo.

Nielsen, 43, who held the job for four years, would have had to reapply for the expanded role of head coach, a post which is being created following recommendations made by the seven-month Argus Review of Australian cricket.

He had been due to stay on in the current role for next month's tour of South Africa before a new head coach was appointed, but Australia will now have to look for an interim coach.

Nielsen told reporters in Colombo he was not interested in applying for the revised job position.

"The review process has come up with some recommendations that are meant for Australian cricket to get better," he said.

"One of those is that a new head coaching role that is different to what I'm doing at the moment and had some different responsibilities added to it.

"For me to continue, I need to go through an interview process with other candidates. I just don't feel it's right for myself or the team to put us through that.

"I think it's time for me to finish."

Cricket Australia said Nielsen is due to take up a "new Australian cricket role that will be announced soon".

CA chief executive James Sutherland said Nielsen could not be persuaded to apply for the new post, but thanked him for his hard work since taking over from John Buchanan in 2007.

"Tim has been national coach during a period in which we have had a long list of great champions leave the game and has been a strong support for new players coming into the side over that period," Sutherland said in a statement.

"I was delighted when he agreed to renew his contract last year and had encouraged him to apply for the new, expanded and redesigned head coach role that the CA Board approved last month.

"However, I have spoken to Tim and understand and respect his decision to now begin a new chapter in his professional life."

During Nielsen's tenure, Australia lost two Ashes series against England and failed to retain the limited-overs World Cup in April after winning it on the last three occasions.

Australian cricket is undergoing a transitional period following the retirement of greats like Shane Watson, Mathew Hayden, Glenn McGrath and Adam Gilchrist.

The sweeping Argus Review was ordered by the Australian cricket board after the Test team's humiliating 3-1 Ashes series defeat to England this year.

The announcement came after Michael Clarke replaced Ricky Ponting as captain and led Australia to Test and one-day series wins in Sri Lanka on his first full tour at the helm.

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