Paul Farbrace ‘favourite’ to succeed Trevor Bayliss as England look to succession plan

Paul Farbrace appears to have emerged as favourite to succeed Trevor Bayliss as England coach after it emerged his appointment as interim was made to provide him with more experience in the role.
Farbrace, England’s assistant coach, has taken charge of the side for the IT20 matches against Australia and India over the next couple of weeks. While the ECB originally explained the appointment by stating it would allow the head coach, Bayliss, to assess some up-and-coming players in the county game, Bayliss has now suggested it has more to do with succession planning. Bayliss’s contract with the ECB ends in September 2019 and he has already made it clear he will not seek an extension.
But while Bayliss believes Farbrace would be an ideal replacement, he has warned it may prove beneficial to split the coaching position into two roles – a coach for the Test team and a coach for the limited-overs teams – to avoid burn-out.
“Andrew Strauss [the director of England cricket] spoke to me six months ago about giving Farby some exposure with the top team,” Bayliss explained. “Everyone knows I won’t be here in September 2019 so what plan Strauss has in mind for that, I don’t know. But I was happy to give Farby the opportunity when he asked me if I’d have any problem with it.
“It’s a good opportunity for him and allows me to watch some county matches.
“He could definitely do the job. He’s had success doing it before but, like anything, it’s about experience. The more you do, the more you work out what works and doesn’t work. This is an opportunity to get that experience with the top team. If that’s what he wants to do, then I’m all for it.”
Farbrace has had previous spells as interim head coach. After Peter Moores was sacked, in May 2015, Farbrace led the team against New Zealand, overseeing the start of their limited-overs resurgence in the process. They passed 400 for the first time in their ODI history in that series and also achieved their highest ODI run-chase of 350. Farbrace has also coached Sri Lanka with some success, winning the World T20 and Asia Cup in 2014. This latest development suggests that, if he really wants the job – and that can’t be guaranteed, he has been on the road with England since 2014 and may be a little weary – he may well be favourite for it.
“My thought on it would be, yes, let’s split the coaching,” Bayliss said. “It’s close to two [different] teams, anyway. We are constantly having to keep an eye on the players, but there’s burn-out with coaches, too. And, with the coaches being a bit older, maybe it doesn’t take quite so much. We might not be running around out there, but sitting on the balcony you play every shot and bowl every ball.