Hailed as the super coach and the guiding force behind New Zealand’s impeccable World Cup 2015 campaign, Mike Hesson, has been appointed the Head Coach of Kings XI Punjab ahead of the 2019 Indian Premier League.
Determined to dig deep, the 44-year-old intends to put together a balanced squad at KXIP that would offer variety on the field and maximise the talent in the squad.
"I'm excited to be in Kings XI Punjab. It certainly has a proud support-base and it's a position I am proud to hold," Hesson told KXIP.in. "I just want to get started and get myself fully immersed in the role."
Born in Dunedin, Hesson ended Otago's drought of two decades in 2007-8 when he coached them to a championship victory in New Zealand's domestic One Day tournament. His understanding of key players in the team makes him special and at KXIP and emphasises that the matchwinners need to continue to share their experiences with the youngsters.
Keeping it authentic
"Having players like (Chris) Gayle, (Ravinchandran) Ashwin and the rest of the big names provides the confidence to the playing group," Hesson observed. "T20 cricket is about confidence, all world class players have won the game single handedly with their individual performances. So the willingness of those players to share the knowledge and experience in the dugout is probably equally important as well."
Known for his calm and composed conduct off the field, Hesson also feels that it is important for the players to have the freedom to express themselves to allow them to flourish.
"I'm a big fan of players being authentic to who they are,” he reasons. “So you know some players feel like that they need to show that they are confident to perform whereas the others are little bit more quiet.
“I'd like the guys to be themselves, whatever allows you to focus on the job the best and that's certainly fine by me," he concludes.