Melbourne:The Australian cricket team may have been on decline since he took over as coach but Tim Nielsen continues to have the backing of the country's board, which on Tuesday extended his contract until the 2011 World Cup in South Asia.
Nielsen's contract was due to expire after the 2009 Ashes tour of England and Cricket Australia (CA) said it was "delighted to have retained his services for the next three years".
The 40-year-old took over from John Buchanan as coach following last year's World Cup in the Caribbean and his first official series at the helm was the inaugural World Twenty20 in South Africa, where Australia crashed out of semi-finals.
"We were really comfortable with the initial appointment of Tim Nielsen as Australian Team Coach," CA Chief Executive Officer James Sutherland said.
"His extensive playing experience and coaching experience at the COE as the head coach, prior to his appointment with the national team, indicated to us that he was the best candidate for the job," he added.
Sutherland said Nielsen enjoyed the full support of CA and the players.
"We continue to be impressed by the way he goes about his job. We're obviously delighted that Tim's going to be with us for this extended period and we know that players and administrators have great confidence in his ability.
"We're pleased to be able to extend his contract with us until the conclusion of the 2011 ICC World Cup, where Australia will be defending champion," he added.
CA said Nielsen's contract extension would also give a sense of stability to the team which is in transition.
"Cricket Australia recognises the need for stability in an upcoming period of international cricket where there will be a heavy playing workload on contracted cricketers and a need to carefully manage a new generation of Australian cricketers," CA said in a statement.
In his playing days, Nielsen was a wicket-keeper and batsman for South Australia, playing 101 first-class matches before retiring in 1999 to become an assistant coach of South Australia.
Nielsen then took over as the head coach at the Cricket Australia Centre of Excellence (COE) in Brisbane, which included managing the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) men's cricket program.