Stuart Law has resigned as West Indies’ head coach after less than two years in the job. The 49-year-old’s tenure will end following the tours to India in October and Bangladesh in November, after which he will move to England to take charge at Middlesex.
“I have had to make the difficult decision to leave my role of head coach with CWI,” Law said in a press release. “It has been very enjoyable, and I believe we have made tremendous strides forward as a team during the past two years.
“I will be taking a role with Middlesex which will keep me close to my family, whilst continuing within the cricket family. I wish the players and staff of CWI every success in the future.”
Law took over from Phil Simmons, who was sacked in September 2016 on disciplinary grounds. He coached West Indies over 32 Tests – winning nine of them, including a famous chase of 322 at Headingley. Both his and his team’s records were more impressive in T20Is – eight wins in 19 matches including victory over a World XI team at Lord’s in May. It was a different story in ODIs, though, with West Indies failing to make it to the Champions Trophy and having to earn their place in the 2019 World Cup by competing in a qualifying tournament.
CWI chief executive Johnny Grave said: “I am disappointed that Stuart is leaving as I believe that we have made real progress under his leadership. I know it was a difficult decision for him and that ultimately the opportunity to work in England, where his family is now based, was a major factor in his decision. We will start the process to appoint a new head coach immediately.”
Law has signed a four-year contract with Middlesex and will be their head coach for all three formats. He replaces Richard Scott, who left the club midway through the season with Middlesex struggling to mount a promotion challenge from Division Two of the County Championship. Law’s arrival also means the end of Daniel Vettori’s two-season spell as specialist T20 coach.
A former Australia international who had a long county career with Lancashire, Essex and Derbyshire, Law said it was a “great privilege” to take on “one of the plum jobs in world cricket”. He has previously coached Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, as well as with Queensland and Brisbane Heat.
Middlesex were crowned county champions in 2016 but suffered relegation a year later. They have consistently underperformed in the limited-overs formats since winning the T20 Cup in 2008.
“We have always tried to recruit the right kind of person at Middlesex and we believe Stuart is the right man to build on the foundations laid over the past decade,” Angus Fraser, Middlesex’s director of cricket, said. “He will provide a fresh voice and a fresh vision to inspire our players, and drive them towards our twin goals of promotion back to Division One of the county championship and limited-overs success.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Richard Johnson for leading the 1st XI in the county championship since July. Richard has done an excellent job since taking over from Richard Scott and has helped Middlesex finish the season on a positive note.
“I would also like to thank Daniel Vettori for his time and commitment to Middlesex as T20 coach. During the two spells Daniel had with us, he made a really positive impression on everyone at the club and we are grateful that he has been so understanding that the arrival of a new coach means that his specialist role will not be required next year.”