Sydney, Aug 20 (IANS) Australian Test skipper Tim Paine confirmed on Friday that a meeting had indeed taken place between embattled coach Justin Langer and the top Cricket Australia (CA) management to iron out differences in the team before CA CEO Nick Hockley issued a public statement supporting the coach.
“There’s no hiding from it, it’s been a tough week, certainly for Justin Langer than it has been for anyone else. We’ve had some really robust conversations among our leaders in the last few days and we’re really looking forward to the next six months with JL (Langer),” Paine said on his SEN radio show.
“We’re looking forward to the (T20) World Cup, we’re looking forward to the Ashes; it’s an exciting period for any cricketer. If anything, I think we’re heading into that tournament and series even more galvanised and even more together. It was important that myself, Aaron Finch, Pat Cummins, and the leaders of Australian cricket got around him, discussed things that needed to be discussed, and then got around him and supported him and looked to move forward,” added Paine.
A Zoom meeting reportedly took place on Wednesday (August 18) to discuss the differences between coach Langer and the players and CA chairman Earl Eddings, CEO Hockley, Test skipper Paine, limited-overs captain Aaron Finch, and vice-captain Pat Cummins were present.
Hockley then issued a statement supporting Langer the same day.
“There’s no doubt the week has been difficult for him (Langer), but as I said the last few days, we’ve been able to galvanise around him, to have some really robust discussions on where we want to take this cricket team, what we expect of him and what he expects of us. The T20 World Cup and the Ashes are probably two of the biggest things that any Australian cricket and any Australian coach wants to be a part of and we’re all on the same page and can’t wait to get started on both of those huge projects for us.”
Paine said that the Australian team’s unimpressive performance over the last 18 months should not be completely attributed to the coach.
“The stuff that was reported if we’re totally honest wasn’t anything new, this is stuff that’s been dragged up from an Ashes series two or three years ago. We’ve had ongoing discussions with JL. JL’s had ongoing discussions with me and his players about us always wanting to get better.
“It’s just been a bit of shame, I think, in the last week that a lot of the failings around Australian cricket have been pinned on JL. That’s certainly not the case. We haven’t lived up to our own standards on the field. We haven’t won enough games of cricket and that’s pretty much put us all under pressure.”