Dermot Reeve has issued a ringing endorsement of the appointment of Ashley Giles as director of cricket at Warwickshire and said he will "jump on a plane in an instant" if he can help in any way.
"I'm very happy for Ashley," Reeve said last night. "I've already contacted him to congratulate him and wish him well. I've also told him that I'm available to help in any way he sees fit.
"When I was captain, there were two men in that side that stuck out in their attitude, commitment and professionalism: Ashley Giles and Dougie Brown. They always gave 100 per cent and they had complete empathy for the selfless spirit we were trying to create. I could never say a bad word about either of them.
"I believe the role of director of cricket at Edgbaston is to ensure the correct environment in the dressing room. That means creating a positive atmosphere, where players enjoy the success of their team-mates and there's none of the jealousy or self-interest that can creep into a team.
"I'm confident that Ashley, who was always loyal to the club and his team-mates, is the ideal man. There's no one who knows the players better than someone who has recently been in the dressing room, but he's also detached enough to instil discipline when required.
"I wouldn't worry too much about his lack of coaching experience. The only way that anyone will ever gain any experience is by being given an opportunity. He has to start somewhere."
Reeve described himself as "overwhelmed" by the reception he had from Warwickshire supporters when he returned to Edgbaston for the first time in two-anda-half years for the club's 125th anniversary celebrations at the end of August.
"I was touched by the love and support I had from the members," he said. "I always thought it would be nice to come back and help in a coaching role and that experience just underlined those feelings. If Ash thinks I can help, I'll jump on a plane in an instant. I hope he keeps me in mind."
Reeve declined to be drawn on Mark Greatbatch's legacy at Edgbaston. "I'm very disappointed that the club have slipped out of the top division in both leagues," Reeve said. "But the past is the past and it's important the club gets behind the new coach."
Giles is in talks with Dougie Brown and Allan Donald about coaching positions at Edgbaston. Both men are understood to have offers elsewhere, with Donald also wanted by England as their bowling coach.