Hollywoodbets Dolphins coach Grant Morgan and his assistant coach Imraan Khan have both accepted contract extensions following the conclusion of the recent domestic season which will keep them at the franchise until at least the end of the 2019/2020 season.
Both coaches played pivotal roles in the Dolphins sharing the Momentum One Day Cup last season as well as making the RAM SLAM T20 Challenge final, and Morgan is excited about the prospect of taking his team to the next level.
“My track record suggests that given time I can succeed,” the coach said. “At every place that I have coached I always try and connect with the people there and get the best results from them, not only for the team and the union, but for the people.
“So, when the offer came up to continue what I am doing here, I was quick to take it.”
Having shown a solid progression over the two seasons that he has been at the helm of the Dolphins, Morgan feels that they are on the edge of his ‘glory era’.
“The blue print to success is there and although we have been good, we still have massive room for improvement.
“We have seen through the success of KZN Inland, and now the Coastal side coming to the party this season, we are on the right track.
“Creating a winning culture at the bottom will filter through the ranks and the Africa T20 Cup and 3 Day Cup success pushes the players in the Dolphins set up,” he added.
Morgan’s assistant coach Imraan Khan, who went straight into the position following his retirement from the game, is excited about the prospect of two more years under Morgan’s leadership.
“I think Morgs and I have worked well together,” Khan mentioned. “It helped that we had a bit of experience working together beforehand in the KZN Inland set up.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with Morgs and we have been relatively successful so far, but the challenge is to replicate and improve on what has happened in the past.”
Chief Executive Officer of the KwaZulu-Natal Cricket Heinrich Strydom believes that the continuity of having Morgan and Khan at the helm for a further two years can only benefit the franchise and KZN cricket as a whole.
“The extension of the contracts of the Hollywoodbets Dolphins coaching staff confirms the faith that we have in them as a combination.
“Grant has a wealth of experience that stems from his playing days as well as a proven coaching record at every level of the CSA pipeline, whilst Imraan has made a successful transition from being a player at the highest level to now being a coach.
“We believe that this committed combination will provide the necessary stability, knowledge and passion to take this franchise to the next level,” Strydom mentioned.
From a players perspective the only new contract in the Hollywoodbets Dolphins ranks has been given to seamer Kerwin Mungroo.
The 24 year-old who broke through spectacularly for Hollywoodbets KZN Inland during the Africa T20 Cup at the start of the season, made the step up to the Dolphins with aplomb in the Sunfoil Series.
The tall, fast bowler registered his best first class figures in the Hollywoodbets Dolphins’ only Sunfoil Series win against the Warriors in Port Elizabeth where he finished with 5/45 in the first innings.
“It is very exciting to have been given this contract with the Dolphins,” the youngster mentioned. “I have spoken to some people and they have told me that it is great to be rewarded with a contract but the hard part is making sure you keep it.
“I am still learning my game and I hope that the next two years with the Dolphins will be good ones and I can push to play all formats for the franchise,” he added.
In the only other change to the contracted players list, Daryn Dupavillon’s contract was not renewed however he has taken up a semi-pro contract with KZN Coastals.
This meteoric rise has culminated in the Ladysmith born tearaway being selected for the Powerade National Academy that gathers on 21 May.
2018/2019 Hollywoodbets Dolphins Contracted Players:
Eathan Bosch, Okhule Cele, Cody Chetty, Rabian Engelbrecht, Sarel Erwee, Rob Frylinck, Sibonelo Makhanya, Kerwin Mungroo, Senuran Muthusamy, Smangaliso Nhlebela, Calvin Savage, Mthokozisi Shezi, Prenelan Subrayen, Vaughn van Jaarsveld, Morné van Wyk, Dane Vilas, Khaya Zondo, Lwandiswa Zuma.