NZ coach Andy Moles resigns

WELLINGTON: New Zealand cricket coach Andy Moles resigned on Saturday, after top players reportedly criticized his performance. The 48-year-old Englishman, who succeeded John Bracewell as New Zealand coach last November, was contracted through the 2011 World Cup.

He was due to depart with the national team on Tuesday for a one-day series and Twenty20 match against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates. Moles said he was not aware of the players' dissatisfaction.

"It is unfortunate that it wasn't raised before and that will be looked at, I'm sure, by New Zealand Cricket going forward," Moles said. "If I had got some feedback earlier, we may have been able to quell this problem and been aware of it.

" Moles was a surprise appointment to the national role. A former English county batsman, he had been coaching New Zealand's Northern Districts province after short stints with minor international sides Kenya and Scotland.

He did not win a test during his time in charge, losing three and drawing four matches, while New Zealand had won nine and lost 10 of 19 one-day internationals since his appointment. Concerns about Moles' coaching reportedly emerged when New Zealand Cricket reviewed the performance on a recent tour to Sri Lanka and at the Champions Trophy one-day series in South Africa.

In contributing to the review, several senior players are reported to have expressed doubts about Moles' performance, citing concerns about his tactical and technical input. New Zealand Cricket summoned Moles to talks Friday and announced his resignation less than 24 hours later.

No current candidates exist for the coaching position and captain Daniel Vettori, who is also a national selector, will combine the roles during the series against Pakistan. Former New Zealand opening batsman John Wright, who successfully coached India, is seen as a potential long-term replacement but has previously declined the job.