Justin Langer resigns as head coach of the Australian men’s cricket team
Justin Langer has resigned as head coach of the Australia men’s cricket team less than a month after a landslide victory in the Ashes series.
- Justin Langer recently coached the men’s team to a 4-0 win in the Ashes series and a T20 World Cup victory last November
- Rumors of player dissatisfaction with Langer’s coaching style have also surrounded the team for much of the past 12 months.
- Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting says it’s ‘almost embarrassing’ how Cricket Australia handled the case
It comes after a meeting with Cricket Australia officials last night.
Langer has won 15 of 27 Tests as a men’s coach since taking charge in 2018 after the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa.
He recently coached the men’s side to a 4-0 win in the Ashes series, while Australia’s victory in the Men’s T20 World Cup last November was their first in tournament history.
But the Australians also recorded a Test series defeat to India in the summer of 2020-21 under his management, as well as clean-ball series defeats in the West Indies and Bangladesh last year.
Rumors of player dissatisfaction with Langer’s coaching style have also surrounded the team for much of the past 12 months.
“It’s a really sad day,” says Ponting
Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting said it was “almost embarrassing” the way Cricket Australia handled the ousting of then-captain Tim Paine just before the Ashes, and now Langer.
“[It] it looks like he must not have had the full support of the board,” Ponting told ABC radio in Melbourne.
“He was very keen to continue in the role, as he should have been, after winning a T20 World Cup and the 4-0 result in the Ashes.
“And that was enough to force a man who put his life body and soul into Australian cricket and did what I believe to be a sensational job of transforming the culture and the way the Australian cricket team was viewed at course of the last three or four It was enough to push him to quit his dream job.
“It’s a really sad day for Australian cricket.”
Ponting said he was disappointed that current Australia Test captain Pat Cummins has repeatedly refused to publicly support his coach, despite admitting, as someone who understands the pressure to lead the country’s men’s cricket team, that Cummins was in an awkward position.
“Pat has been put in quite a difficult position as captain. If it’s not just him, if there are other players coming up to him to let him know that they think Justin is not not the right man, so I think that puts Pat in a tough position,” Ponting said.
“I may have been asked for an opinion here or there on a certain manager, but it seems that the players and possibly a few other Australian cricket team staff could have influenced Cricket Australia to take the decision they have.”
Ponting said current assistant Andrew McDonald and former England manager Trevor Bayliss were the names he had heard as potential Langer replacements.
Much of the discussion centered on whether a coach for Test, Twenty20 and one-day internationals is the best approach, but Ponting said he didn’t think splitting the roles was a good idea .
“[As a player] I would like the same coach. I would like to hear similar messages day after day. The most important thing is the relationship between the player and the coach and, if you start putting two or three people in those roles, I think there can be a lot more confusion than necessary.”
Langer, according to friend and former team-mate Ponting, has not returned to Perth to see his family since September, with COVID-19 restrictions further separating players and staff from loved ones and increasing pressure on the team.
Ponting said Cricket Australia, over its decades in the game, had a record of what should be internal disputes spilling over into the public domain.
“There are so many of these incidents,” he said.
“The general public would sit down and say, ‘What are they doing here? Why do they handle these situations the way they are? “”