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Australia get first foreign head coach

Former South Africa cricket coach Mickey Arthur on Tuesday became the first foreign head coach of the Australian team, completing a sweeping revamp of management following their disastrous Ashes campaign last year.

cricket Updated: Nov 23, 2011 00:39 IST

Former South Africa cricket coach Mickey Arthur on Tuesday became the first foreign head coach of the Australian team, completing a sweeping revamp of management following their disastrous Ashes campaign last year.

The 43-year-old was in charge of the Proteas from 2005 until 2010 and had most recently been coaching Western Australia. His contract runs until after the 2015 World Cup.

He replaces former coach Tim Nielsen who resigned in September. Troy Cooley had been in charge on an acting basis. "I don't think it'll matter," Arthur told reporters about being the first foreigner to coach the side

Arthur beat out the challenge of former New Zealand coach Steve Rixon, who is the current fielding coach for the Australian side and was considered one of the favourites for the top job.

Arthur's first series in charge will be a two-test series against New Zealand, starting in Brisbane on December 1.