Kevin Darlington, 48, first represented the United States in cricket in 2010, after a solid First Class career playing for Guyana. The New York resident brings 20 years of coaching experience and instant domestic familiarity to the Men’s Youth Coach position. Darlington’s tournament-leading 14 wickets in the 2010 ICC World Cricket League Division Five helped USA Cricket gain promotion to Division Four. More recently, Darlington was assistant coach to Pubudu Dassanayake when USA Cricket gained ODI status in 2019.
‘We had some really good candidates short listed for U19 men’s coaching positions,’ USA board member Srinivas Salver told Emerging Cricket. ‘But Kevin Darlington, with his previous coaching experience with the USA National Team, stood out as the most qualified candidate. With Kevin’s expertise, we believe the youth talent in the country can be elevated and take us to the U19 World Cup in 2022.’
Former Pakistani International Asif Mujtaba of Dallas brings an impressive list of qualifications to the position of Women’s Youth Coach. Having represented Pakistan in 91 matches (66 ODI, 25 Test) throughout his 22 year First Class career, Mujtaba was especially brutal to Australian bowlers. In six ODI innings against the antipodeans, Mujtaba scored 214 runs with five not outs and two fifties. His dramatic last ball six off of Steve Waugh to tie against Australia in 1992 remains a famous moment to this day. Most recently a selector for USA during their successful quest for ODI status, Mujtaba also brings 20 years of coaching experience to the table.
‘Following the launch of the talent ID for women and girls, this appointment is another major step toward establishing a youth national team,’ Nadia Gruny of the USA board told Emerging Cricket. ‘We have such a talented and committed core group of youth players who will surely be our future stars. To bring them into a national team setup now represents the building blocks for a successful and sustainable future for our women and girls’ national teams. USA will be a team to reckon with, and it starts with these girls.’
‘I’ve known Asif for almost a decade and I’ve worked with these girls for the past five years in different capacities,’ Gruny continued. ‘It’s truly been a labour of love to create opportunities for them to become the exciting, determined, talented cricketers that they are today, and I’m thrilled that Asif will help take them to the next level.’
USA Cricket wrapped up their women’s and girls’ west coast talent ID events on October 25, and continue their men’s senior and youth zonal trials into the middle of November.
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