In the wake of the ball-tampering scandal, The Australian cricket team was in need of a massive shake-up. With their captain and vice-captain banned and their coach stepping down, things were desperate. Now, Cricket Australia has appointed former Test opener Justin Langer as the new coach in all three forms of the game.
CA chief executive James Sutherland described him as the “standout” candidate for the job. Langer was the favourite for the role in the aftermath of Darren Lehmann’s resignation.
Langer’s contract runs for 4 years blanketing two Ashes series, the 2019 World Cup and the World Twenty20. He will take the office of head coach from May 22 onwards.
The former Test opener has his work cut out for him as he prepares to lead Australian cricket out of a particularly rough patch.
A expected, He will be without the services of Steve Smith and David Warner, as they serve their bans. Instead, he helms a team with rookie leaders.
Langer’s first challenge will be an ODI series against England. Aside from that, he will also be part of Rick McCosker’s panel to review the culture of the national team.
He was an integral cog in one of the most successful Australian teams. He is reputed as a tenacious batsman and fierce competitor in 105 Tests and 8 one-day internationals.
He was appointed as the batting coach for the national team from 2009-12 before taking over as head coach in Western Australia in 2012.
Prior to his appointment, Western Australian cricket had been in the doldrums, but under his command, has become a force to reckon with in the domestic scene.
“We are thrilled to appoint Justin as team head coach of the Australian men’s cricket team,” Sutherland said.
“Whilst Darren Lehmann was not due to complete his term until next year, we have had a succession plan in place for this role for some time.
“In addition to professional development opportunities, this plan has included several coaches stepping into the head role to relieve Darren at times, and to also provide support roles, including Justin, and forms part of our long running succession planning process.
“The plan has allowed us to consider several worthy candidates, but Justin was the clear standout, particularly based on his recent coaching and player development achievements.
“We firmly believe Justin is the right person to lead this team and have huge confidence in what he will bring to the role.”
Justin Langer admitted that he was honoured and humbled to be given the job as Australian coach.
“It is humbling to be appointed as coach of the Australian men’s cricket team,” Langer said.
“I would like to thank the Western Australian Cricket Association and the Perth Scorchers for their support over the past six seasons, and for giving me the opportunity to lead and work with two great teams and many exceptional people.
“I’d like to especially thank my family for being with me on this journey and for supporting me in accepting this position.
“I am very excited about the scope I now have to coach the country that supported me so much in my cricketing career.