Colin Povey expects a “very strong field of candidates” to replace Ashley Giles as director of cricket at Warwickshire.

Two months after lifting the county championship, the Bears have lost their leader after Giles quit to join the England set-up as ODI and T20 coach.

It is a blow to the county but chief executive Povey expects the vacancy to attract high-quality applicants, including some already at Edgbaston.

“It’s not great timing,” he said. “But things moved quickly and we have the task of filling some sizeable shoes.

“It is a critical appointment and we want someone in as soon as possible but must also take time to get that right person.

“I think we can expect a very strong field of candidates. I’m sure certain people within the club will think they have a chance of filling this role. Equally, we will want to see what is out in the open market.”

Giles’ first major assignment will be the Champions Trophy in England next summer, which culminates in a final at Edgbaston.

He admitted it was a wrench to leave.

“It’s a bitter-sweet move, because I’ve loved my time at Edgbaston,” he said.

“But the opportunity to coach at international level is a great one. I have always had the ambition to coach internationally.

“I have worked closely with Andy Flower in recent years as a selector and am looking forward to continuing to work with him to build on the progress that has been made with the ODI and T20 sides in recent years.

“I would also like to thank Warwickshire for the faith they showed in me when appointing me to my first major coaching role and for the outstanding support they have offered throughout my time at Edgbaston.”

Former England captain Nasser Hussain has backed Giles’ appointment.

“Ashley ticks every box. He’s been very successful with Warwickshire as a coach,” he said. “He’s played for England, he’s been involved as a selector and been involved in the set-up of English cricket now for the best part of 15 years.

“His finger will be on the pulse for the next generation of England cricketers.’’