Former Australia captain Michael Clarke believes Justin Langer will end his coaching stint with the team if they manage to win The Ashes. The former opener was under tremendous pressure heading into the T20 World Cup with concerns growing over his strained relationship with the players.
With Australia now winning the T20 World Cup as well, Clarke feels that winning the urn is the only thing left for Langer to achieve with this group of players. Speaking during the official announcement of the T20 World Cup at the SCG, Clarke said:
“He wanted Australia to be the best team in the world. He wanted us to play a brand of cricket that he’s proud of, and we’ve just won the World Cup. If we can win the Ashes as well, he’s achieved everything that he’s come here for and knowing Lang [Langer] he won’t coach for the wrong reasons.”
“I hope - not just for the players, but for him - that we can continue this form, win the Ashes series and then give him the option to do whatever he wants to do. If he thinks his job is done, then I think he’ll walk away, and I’d love to see him walk away on his own terms.”
Justin Langer's contract ends following the end of Australia's tour of Pakistan next year. He was roped in as coach in 2018 and led the team to the semi-finals of the World Cup in 2019. However, Langer has been criticized for successive series defeats to India at home.
Langer took a backseat during Australia's T20 World Cup
The coach reportedly handled less responsibility and oversaw things as skipper Aaron Finch led the troops at the T20 World Cup. The new approach paid dividends as the country managed to win their first ever title in the competition.
Josh Hazlewood had commented on Langer's role in the tournament following their win. He said:
“Everything has really been player-driven. He’s probably taken a big back seat and let a lot of other staff play their roles, especially the players as well, to take a bit more ownership of what they’re doing in and around training and games. I’d say that’s probably the main thing that’s happened over the past few weeks.”
Parts of the England and Australian contingent have reached Australia from the UAE for The Ashes, which is slated to begin on December 8.