Foxcroft backs off Otago captaincy to focus on own play

Dean Foxcroft. Photo: Gregor Richardson
Dean Foxcroft. Photo: Gregor Richardson
Otago will need a new captain this summer.

Volts all-rounder Dean Foxcroft has stepped down from the role following some careful consideration during the offseason.

He advised the team of his decision recently.

The former South African under-19 representative made his debut for the Black Caps last year. He has played one ODI and five T20s for his adopted nation.

But he had a quiet summer with the bat on the domestic circuit and felt he needed to concentrate on his own game.

"I’m at the point in my career where I want to focus on helping Otago win games and on my individual performances," he said.

"It is a massive privilege to captain Otago  ... but going forward I’ve got to focus more on myself and my batting and my bowling as well.

"I want to operate as a genuine all-rounder."

Foxcroft’s wife, Reandi, gave birth to the couple’s first child, son Andrew Wyn Foxcroft, in November.

Spending time with them without worrying about the extra duties the captain carried  was also a factor in his decision.

"There is time for cricket and time for family. And I feel when I get home I can spend time with my family and then as a cricketer I can 100% focus on my game."

Foxcroft has not given up on captaining Otago again. But for now he wants to support his replacement.

The Volts lost some tactical nous when veteran opener Hamish Rutherford retired last season.

But spearhead Jacob Duffy has previously captained Otago and might be an option. Wicketkeeper Max Chu was vice-captain last season and the former Otago Boys’ High School head boy is a natural leader.

New coach Ashley Noffke said there was no rush to appoint someone as the Volts did not open their season until mid-October.

"I want to get to know people a bit better and the one message I will say to them is I want to see actions and behaviours — I don’t want to hear why they think they will be a good captain," Noffke said.

"I want to see the evidence which makes them a leader in this group."

Noffke labelled Foxcroft’s decision to step down as "courageous and really a mature decision" to do what he needed to  bring out the best in himself.