WATCH: New Oz coach escaped 2004 'cheating' scandal

2018-05-03 13:03
Justin Langer (File)

Cape Town - Justin Langer has vowed to fix the scandal-hit Australian cricket team's behaviour and win back respect after being named head coach in all three formats of the game on Thursday.

The former Test opener starts his new role on May 22 for a four-year term which takes in two Ashes series, a Cricket World Cup and a World Twenty20 tournament.

The 47-year-old takes the reins at a time of crisis following the 12-month suspensions of ex-captain Steve Smith and his deputy David Warner over a ball-tampering scandal which also saw previous coach Darren Lehmann quit.

While Langer is adamant that he'll help improve the Australian team's behaviour, a few incidents from his playing career may raise doubts in some quarters.

During a Test against Sri Lanka in Colombo in 2004, Langer faced possible sanction after he knocked off the bails while walking past the stumps.

Australia belatedly appealed for a hit-wicket decision against Sri Lanka batsman Hashan Tillakaratne, before the umpires referred the decision to the third umpire to verify how the bail had been dislodged.

Television pictures showed that Langer dislodged the bail with his hand while he crossed over the pitch to take up a new fielding position for the right-handed Thilan Samaraweera.

Despite damning television evidence, Langer insisted that he did not intentionally flick off the bail.

ICC match referee Chris Broad afterwards accepted Langer’s explanation and cleared the player of any wrongdoing.

WATCH the incident in the video clip below to make your own conclusions regarding Langer’s actions:

During his career, Langer was also involved in controversial decisions when he refused to walk after seemingly being caught behind.

In a match against Pakistan in Hobart in 1999, Langer appeared to be out caught behind off the bowling of Wasim Akram but was given not out.

The incident (WATCH below) is shown in the video clip below while at the end of the video - shot more than 10 years later - Langer admitted that he had edged the ball.

In Langer's defence, it should be noted that players not walking is not viewed as cheating by many cricketers.

There was also another Test against Sri Lanka when Langer refused to walk despite video footage indicating that he had in fact played the ball off the face of his bat, before being caught in the slips!

WATCH the incident in the video clip below, which shows a clearly unhappy Sri Lankan fast bowler Chaminda Vaas…

Langer's playing career spanned almost 20 years and 360 first-class matches, scoring more than 28 000 first-class runs.

As a coach, he had been in charge of Western Australia and the Perth Scorchers since November 2012.

Langer led the Scorchers to Big Bash League T20 championships three times, the most of any coach, in 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2016-17.

He also led the WA Warriors to one-day Cup titles twice, in 2014-15 and 2017-18.

Langer was involved in the Australian team as an assistant coach for three years from November 2009 and has twice been head coach on an interim basis - in an ODI tri-series in the Caribbean in 2016, and a home T20 series against Sri Lanka in 2017.

Read more on:    australia  |  justin langer  |  cricket


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