Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Pat Cummins breaks silence on Langer’s exit: His intensity was never an issue for players

Australian Test captain Pat Cummins has broken his silence following Justin Langer’s highly-publicised resignation, thanking the coach for his service to the national men’s cricket team.

Last week, Cricket Australia offered the 51-year-old West Australian a six-month contract extension, prompting him to resign with immediate effect.

Cummins copped come criticism for his “gutless” media appearances leading up to Langer’s resignation, with several former players condemning the pace bowler of not backing the coach.

But the New South Welshman has released a statement ahead of Australia’s five-match T20 series against Sri Lanka, explaining that the team needed a “new style of coaching and skill set.”

Cummins also took a pointed swipe at former players who have slammed him in the media, stating that he will continue to stick up for his mates throughout the transition process.

“There has been much public comment since Justin Langer’s resignation as the Coach of the Australian Cricket team,” the statement begins.

“For good reason, I haven’t made public comment before today.

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“To speak about a decision, which was yet to be made and which is for Cricket Australia to make, would have put Cricket Australia and the team in an impossible position.

“I believe in respecting the sanctity of the change room and proper process.

“Now that a decision has been made by Justin to resign and given his own public comments and others by Cricket Australia, I can provide some clarity.

“Justin has acknowledged that his style was intense. And it was.

“He has apologised to players and staff for his intensity.I think the apology was unnecessary. Because the players were ok with JL’s intensity.

“It came from a good place – his fierce love of Australia and the baggy green – something which has served Australian cricket well for three decades.

“It’s what makes him a legend of the sport. And Justin’s intensity drove a better team culture and higher team standards”.

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“These are significant Justin Langer legacies. And on behalf of the players, I thank Justin. So, his intensity was not the issue for the players and the support staff.

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“The question is: what is the best style of coaching for the future, given how the team has evolved?

“To be better players for Australia, from this solid foundation, we need a new style of coaching and skill set.

“This was the feedback the players gave to Cricket Australia. And it’s the feedback I understand support staff also gave.

“We welcome that Cricket Australia invited the players and staff to contribute to CA’s evaluation.

“I add that as professional sportspeople we would have accepted any decision CA were to make because that’s what professionals do.

“CA have made a brave call to transition, given the team has been winning.

“Finally, we are custodians of cricket, with one very big thing in common: our first duty is to Australian cricket, which is bigger than any one of us.

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