Sneaky Langer move backfires spectacularly

1 month ago 12
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A documentary about the Australian cricket team is one of the causes of friction between national coach Justin Langer and his players, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

The reports says Langer negotiated his own deal with Amazon Prime for The Test, with the former opening batsman reportedly receiving about $40,000 for the eight-part series.

The coach, who preaches unity, then left his players to negotiate their own deals. That blew up in his face, when the players received $81,000 each from Amazon Prime, regardless of how long they spent on screen.

Australian captain Tim Paine (left) and coach Justin Langer. (AAP)

That meant fringe players, such as Jack Wildermuth, who was barely seen in the documentary, received double the amount Langer had negotiated for himself.

"You are absolutely correct in what you heard, and if I look back at that moment in time and with hindsight I should have reacted differently," Langer told the SMH.

The documentary showed a heated confrontation between Langer and batsman Usman Khawaja, in the lead up to a Test against Pakistan in 2018.

It was the first public sign of tension between the coach and his players, a storyline that has dominated 2021.

Justin Langer (Getty)

Earlier this year reports emerged that players were tired of Langer's mood swings and intensity.

Of most concern to Cricket Australia will be the constant leaks against Langer from the playing group, a sign that he's lost the dressing room.

The latest revelations come as Cricket Australia has been forced to call an emergency meeting with senior players as the drama drags on.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports Test captain Tim Paine, white ball captain Aaron Finch, and their likely successor Pat Cummins met with CA officials earlier this week.

The meeting, with chief executive Nick Hockley and chairman Earl Eddings, was designed to encourage the players to once again get their grievances out in the open.

White ball captain Aaron Finch with Justin Langer (Getty)

It came hours after Hockley had released a statement supporting Langer, which notably failed to address his future beyond his current contract, that expires next year.

It also drew ridicule for claiming the side had enjoyed "great success" over the last 18 months in all three formats of the game.

Australia has only played one Test series in that time, a 2-1 loss to an under-strength India last summer.

Earlier this week, former captain Ian Chappell told Wide World of Sports that Langer faces a "very hard" task to regain the support of the Australian players.

"The problem you've got is once you've alienated players in that environment, there's not a lot you can do to regain their support and respect," he said.

"It's going to be very hard for Langer to retrieve the situation from here."

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