“I was happy — besides the bullshit politics,” says Justin Langer
Former Australia head coach Justin Langer has blamed “politics” for involving his exit as coach despite guiding the team to an Ashes thrashing of England and the T20 World Cup crown while he had stepped down from his role in February.
Former Australia coach Justin Langer has blamed “politics” for involving his exit as coach despite guiding the team to an Ashes thrashing of England and the T20 World Cup crown.
The 51-year-old has stepped down from his role in February after failing to secure the public support of key players and following caustic contract talks with governing body Cricket Australia (CA).
He was disappointed at being offered only a six-month extension despite steering Australia to a 4-0 Ashes victory at the start of the year and the T20 title in the UAE in 2021.
The great Australia cricket legends including Ricky Ponting, Steve Waugh, and the late Shane Warne jumped to back his defense, taking umbrage at the way he was being treated.
But in the runup to his departure, unhappy players had complained anonymously to Australian media about his intense coaching style.
In his first comments since a still-bristling Langer detailed a heated conversation with CA’s then interim chairman Richard Freudenstein the day after he quit.
“The first thing he said to me was, ‘It must make you feel so good that all your mates are supporting you in the media,'”Langer was quoted by cricket.com.au, CA’s digital arm, as telling a chamber of commerce event in Perth on Wednesday.
“I said, ‘Yeah it is, acting chairman, but with all due respect, those mates are also the all-time greats of Australian cricket.
“‘They are the fabric of Australian cricket. They are Australian cricket. They also work all around the world in cricket. So yeah, I’m glad my mates are looking after me. Imagine if you had.’
“Ironically, the last six months of my coaching career were the most enjoyable period of 12 years of coaching,”he added.
“Not only did we win everything, but I had energy and I had focus and I was happy — besides the bullshit politics.”
Langer was appointed as head coach in 2018 with Australian Cricket at its lowest ebb for decades in the wake of a cheating affair and was credited with restoring pride in their beloved baggy green cap.
He was replaced by Andrew McDonald, with Langer immediately linked to the England coaching position after Chris Silverwood stepped down after their disastrous Ashes campaign.
“I’ve never spoken to English cricket,”he said.
“The thought of coaching England … mate!”