Benkenstein named Hampshire coach
Hampshire have appointed former Durham captain Dale Benkenstein as their new head coach.
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Benkenstein, 39, was contracted to Durham for the 2014 season but requested to leave after missing the majority of last season's LV= County Championship title success through injury.
The South African will leave Chester-le-Street with fond memories, having led the county to their first major silverware with the 2007 Friends Provident Trophy, followed by their their maiden county championship the following year.
"I'm looking forward to what is going to be a new challenge for me. It's a brilliant set-up here, I've spoken to the players and coaches at the club and I'm excited about what's ahead," said Benkenstein, who will report to director of cricket Giles White.
"I've really enjoyed my time in South Africa during the winter and it's made me look forward to coaching here at Hampshire with what is an exciting squad of players and hopefully we can have an excellent season."
White, who had previously acted as head coach, said: "We are delighted to have Dale on board. He comes with a wealth of experience and an excellent reputation as a leader. We are looking forward to his involvement."
Benkenstein retires as Durham's top first-class run-scorer with 9,055 since his arrival in 2005.
A statement from the county read: "Durham County Cricket Club can confirm that Dale Benkenstein has been released from his contract for the 2014 season.
"The club has agreed to a request from Dale to release him from his contract prior to the 2014 season.
"With no immediate (coaching) opportunities at Durham following the success of the club last season, Dale has requested that he be released from his contract in order to pursue player/coach opportunities elsewhere.
"Although disappointed that Dale will not be returning as a player, Durham CCC recognises that at age 39 and following a serious shoulder injury this is an important time for Dale and the club does not wish to stand in the way of his career development."