Graeme Smith has agreed to become Cricket South Africa’s acting director of cricket for a three-month period.
In a brief statement issued by CSA, it said it had come to an agreement with former Test captain until the start of the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League, which is likely to start in March.
The important announcement comes just 15 days before the England tour of South Africa, which starts with a Boxing Day Test in Centurion. The board is currently under crisis following the suspension of Chief executive Thabang Moroe.
Smith’s role was unclear in the statement released but he will have to appoint a selection panel and coaching staff for the upcoming series.
The 38-year-old had initially withdrawn his interest in the role, raising concerns that he won’t be given the required freedom to do the job on his own terms.
He represented South Africa in 177 Tests and captained his side in 108 of them.
Cricket South Africa’s acting chief executive, Dr Jacques Faul, said he was delighted to have Smith on board.
"Obviously Graeme has had his concerns during the course of the last few months but I am pleased to say we have overcome those concerns and I look forward to working with him to urgently address pressing cricket matters.
"Graeme is statistically the most successful Test captain in the history of the game. He is a natural leader and his knowledge of the game is second to none. To have him on board to work with the professional cricket arm of CSA, as well as the cricketing pipeline, which is so vital for our game, is a massive shot in the arm for CSA during this period,” he added.
Smith, in a statement, said: "I've publicly stated a number of times that I would love to assist CSA in this difficult time, particularly in developing this new role of director of cricket. I'm still as passionate about South African cricket as I ever was and I'm looking forward to getting stuck into the role. There is a lot of work to be done in the next few weeks and months and my objective will always be to make a positive impact during my tenure."