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CA to make decision on Langer’s future after Ashes

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MELBOURNE: Cricket Australia’s high performance chief Ben Oliver said that a decision on head coach Justin Langer’s future would be made after the completion of the Ashes series, with the coach’s contract set to expire in mid-2022.

Langer’s leadership was criticised amid player discontent in the lead-up to the T20 World Cup but he steered Australia to victory over New Zealand in the final and has guided them to an unassailable 3-0 lead over England in the ongoing Ashes series.

“We made a commitment prior to the start of the summer that we’d be really focused on the World Cup campaign, this Ashes campaign and once this series is finished we’d come back as a collective and work through that,” Oliver said of Langer’s position.

“Justin has done a great job. I think he really embraced the conversations that were had over the winter and he’s really evolved and leaned into that.”

Langer’s position at the helm came under scrutiny in August as a result of discontent over his coaching style, prompting talks between players and officials that saw the former opening batsman alter his approach.

“Those conversations were really constructive at the time and a great credit to the player leaders who were able to provide some feedback that was really constructive,” said Oliver.

“Justin embraced those conversations and ultimately we’ve created — and he’s helped create along with the other support staff and the player leaders — an environment where the team has been able to perform incredibly well.”

The final Test of the Ashes begins in Hobart on Jan 14. Australia then have white-ball meetings with New Zealand and Sri Lanka scheduled before the Test side travel to Pakistan for a three-match series in March.

Oliver said there was no specific timeline for the talks on Langer’s contract but that it was great to see the success Australia was having.

“The team has played some incredible cricket and it’s a great credit to the players, the staff and to everyone who’s been involved in the journey over a long period of time now for these players to support them,” he added.

Published in Dawn, January 1st, 2022

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