Andrew McDonald appointed Rajasthan Royals head coach

Former Australia allrounder Andrew McDonald has been appointed head coach of Rajasthan Royals for a period of three years from IPL 2020. He will replace Paddy Upton who had been in charge of the side in 2019, when Royals finished second from last with just five wins in 14 games.

McDonald, who had played four Tests for Australia, is only 38, but has already built strong credentials as a coach, having ended his playing career in 2016. He enjoyed a stellar season as coach in 2018-19, leading Victoria to the one-day and Shield titles in addition to overseeing Melbourne Renegades’ run to their first Big Bash League crown.

McDonald has also had coaching stints in franchise cricket, and was named head coach of Birmingham Phoenix in The Hundred in June earlier this year. In IPL 2018, he had served as Royal Challengers Bangalore’s bowling coach. McDonald has also made his mark in English county cricket, having led a revival of Leicestershire from a low base.

McDonald, who is currently working with Victoria in the Sheffield Shield, said: “The Rajasthan Royals is a new, exciting challenge for me, and I can’t wait to get started working with our world-class players and coaches in one of the biggest sporting leagues in the world.”

McDonald has IPL experience as a player as well, having turned out for Royals Challengers and Delhi Daredevils (who have now been rebranded as Delhi Capitals). In all, he has played 11 games in the league, scoring 123 runs and taking 11 wickets. In the BBL, he has represented Renegades and Sydney Thunder, making 230 runs picking up five wickets in 13 games.

Zubin Bharucha, Royals’ head of cricket, welcomed McDonald into the set-up, saying: “Andrew’s innovative, forward-thinking nature, along with his experience in the IPL and success in other leagues is why we have selected him as head coach to help us drive long term success. He is data-focused and an impressive man manager who remains well versed with the rigours of modern day cricket.”