The many faces of New Zealand cricket manager Currie

March 7th, 2009 - 9:17 pm ICT by IANS  

Christchurch, March 7 (IANS) From a wrestler, a marathon runner, New Zealand’s chef de mission at the Olympics and now the cricket team’s manager, Dave Currie has worn many hats during his career.
Currie was chef de mission of the New Zealand team for the 2004 and 2008 Olympics campaigns and the 2002 and 2006 Commonwealth Games. He will again manage the New Zealand contingent at the New Delhi Commonwealth Games next year and at the London Olympics in 2012.

Currie himself wonders how he manages to find time time for the Black Caps.

“I’ve always had a real interest in cricket and the opportunity to be involved with the Black Caps sounded fantastic and I decided I would do it. They’re a very committed side. And to be involved with a group who want to become very good cricketers was something that I saw would be quite exciting,” The New Zealand Herald quoted Currie as saying.

Asked about his role in the cricket team, Currie said: “The role for me is to make sure that there is seamlessness around all the organisation and off-field preparations for Dan (Vettori) and the players, so they can focus on just playing cricket.

“Cricket is a brutal schedule. So it’s important that all of that goes well for the players to ensure that they can do what they need to do,” he added.

Currie, who tried hard to become a marathon runner, said that it was commitment of the athletes that prompted him to become a sports administrator.

“I tried very hard to be a competitive marathon runner and to get to the Olympics myself, but at the end of the day I simply wasn’t good enough. I’ve got some understanding, though, of the commitment and effort athletes have to put in to get to the top,” he explained.

“Along the way I was race director of the Ironman (triathlon) for 10 years, I was asked to run as a guide for a marathon runner in the 1988 Paralympics in Seoul, came back from that and got involved in disability sports, was president of Paralympics New Zealand, was asked to take the Paraolympic team to Sydney in 2000 and then I was encouraged I guess to apply for the role in Commonwealth Games in Manchester and then (at the Olympics) in Athens,” he added.

Currie, whose role model is eminent mountaineer Edmund Hillary, said that he was also selected for the national wrestling team for a tour of India at the age of 17.

“For the next seven to eight years, wrestling dominated my sporting life. It was after that when I got injured that I started running competitively. I was in my 30s before I got really serious about marathon running,” he said.

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