Johannesburg: The present South African coaching unit led by former India coach Gary Kirsten is the best the South African national team has ever had, according to former captain and cricket administrator Dr Ali Bacher.
Bacher told the Beeld newspaper that the 'Pyrites' current coaching trio of Gary Kirsten (coach), Russel Domingo (assistant coach) and Allan Donald (bowling coach) are the best combination of coaches the country has had since they returned to the world stage 20 years ago in 1991.
Bacher, who led the transformation of formerly whites-only national cricket in South Africa after the death of apartheid under the old United Cricket Board of South Africa, was the last captain to lead South Africa to a 4-0 victory against Australia in a home Test series in 1970.
More than four decades later, South Africa once again have a chance to make a clean sweep in the ongoing Test series against Australia.
"The South African team has an exceptional chance to do what we managed and to win the current series," Bacher said.
South Africa are leading the two-match Test series 1-0, with the second and final Test having started at the Wanderers in Johannesburg on Thursday.
The former player also said that the Australia team was currently like a ripe fruit ready to be plucked.
"Without Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and Adam Gilchrist in their midst, and with Ricky Ponting at the tail end of his career, the Aussies are vulnerable."
Stating that Australia were in a "transitional phase," Bacher said, "I think next year's series against England will decide who the best Test-playing country in the world is."