Imraan Khan has been appointed the new captain of the Dolphins.

Khan, 29, takes over from Ahmed Amla, who has been the team's skipper for the past three seasons.

The appointment caps a remarkable period of success for the left-handed opening batsman who enjoyed his best season for the Dolphins last term.

Not only was he the leading scorer in the SuperSport Series with 835 runs, but he also made his debut for South Africa in the final Test against Australia.

Khan's promotion follows the appointment of Graham Ford as the new Dolphins coach. The decision to change the entire leadership of the senior team, with Ford replacing Yashin Ebrahim, reflects the franchise's desire to improve the team's fortunes after a sequence of bad results over the last three seasons.

Khan, who captained the South Africa Under-19 team on their tour of England in 2003, said he was delighted to accept the offer. "It's always been my ambition to captain the Dolphins, so I didn't need much time to think about it," he said on Thursday.

Khan said it was no secret that the Dolphins' recent performances had been poor.

"We need to work extremely hard on our skills as well as our intensity levels, which have not always been right in the past. We have a squad with immense potential and I see no reason why we shouldn't start to turn things around next season."

Ford, currently in England coaching Kent, said he was happy with Khan's appointment.

"I've been watching and working with Immy since he was a boy, and I've always admired his qualities as a player and a leader. We've got a lot of work to do to turn things around, but I'm encouraged by what's happened so far."

Amla, who wished his successor well, said he would now focus on his batting. In the last three years he has developed into one of the best in the country.

"The results during my time as captain were disappointing," he conceded, "but I learnt a lot about myself and team dynamics. Unfortunately, I didn't have the right resources on and off the field" he said.