Jonty Rhodes to part ways with Mumbai Indians

The erstwhile fielding coach, who wishes to spend more time on his personal business ventures, will be replaced by James Pamment from New Zealand.

James Pamment has served as head coach of the Northern Districts Cricket Association.   -  Special Arrangement

Jonty Rhodes will no longer serve as Mumbai Indians’ fielding coach, the franchise has announced via a communique. The former South African international, who carved out a niche for himself for his exemplary fielding standards, will be replaced by James Pamment from New Zealand. Rhodes has been associated with Mumbai Indians since the 2009 Indian Premier League season.

Rhodes took the decision to part, choosing instead to spend more time on his personal business ventures.

Franchise owner Akash Ambani paid tribute to Rhodes’ service for the team in these nine years. “Jonty has been a pillar of strength and energy in Mumbai Indians. His contribution cannot be valued in words. We respect his decision and wish him the best for the future. Jonty will always be a part of Mumbai Indians family for life,” Ambani said.

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On his parting, Jonty said, “It has been a remarkable journey with Mumbai Indians, one that I will cherish all my life,” he said, adding, “Personally, it’s been quite a remarkable journey for me to work with fantastic set of individuals like Sachin, Rohit, Anil, Ricky, Mahela and all the support staff and players over the years.”

‘Experienced coach’

His replacement Pamment has shouldered coaching responsibilities in domestic cricket for a number of years in New Zealand, his adopted country. He has served as the High Performance Coach for the Bay of Plenty Cricket Association and the Northern Districts Cricket Association, for which he has also assumed the responsibility of head coach (since 2013). From 2010 to 2013, Pamment was the National Fielding Specialist and Development Coach with New Zealand Cricket.

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In the communique, Ambani pointed out the clinching factor in recruiting him for his franchise. “James is an experienced coach at the international level having worked with New Zealand Cricket as fielding specialist and development. What impressed us was the way James had coached Northern Districts in Champions League T20 in 2014, and to be honest, his sides’ fielding unit was one of the best Mumbai Indians had ever faced.”

Pamment said, “It’s an honour for me to join the ranks of Mumbai Indians. It will be a great challenge and at the same time a privilege to fulfil the duties of a role that was held by someone like Jonty. He has instilled a brilliant work culture among the players, on and off the field, and the results are out there for everyone to see.”