Australia players '100% behind' head coach Justin Langer, says Tim Paine

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Langer’s intensity as coach has led to murmurs of discontent in the Australian dressing room

“We obviously did not play as well as we (would have) liked against India and we all want to improve” – Paine  

Tim Paine has insisted that Justin Langer has the full support of the Australian playing group, even as rumblings of dressing-room discontent continued.

“We are all 100% behind JL and the job he is doing,” Paine told reporters in Brisbane where he was attending a coaching accreditation programme. “We had a team review at the end of the Indian series, which is a pretty common factor in professional sports. From Justin to our last player, everyone will get feedback they can improve on.

“We will go to the Gold Coast in a couple of weeks to delve a bit deeper into that… we are trying to create an environment to give people feedback. We obviously did not play as well as we (would have) liked against India and we all want to improve, from Justin down.”

Reports of tensions behind the scenes have largely centred on Langer’s intensity as head coach of the Australia men’s team. These emerged shortly after the Test series loss against India at the beginning of the year, with Langer acknowledging the result as a “wake-up call”. More recently, a report in Nine newspapers again put the spotlight on his coaching style.

Langer has not had an Australia squad together since the end of the series against India, as he was not with the T20I side in New Zealand; he was set to be on the Test tour in South Africa instead, but that trip was postponed.

“We know England are a better side than what they put up. So we’ll take a little bit from it but don’t read too much into it at the same time.”

Paine on England’s Test-series loss to New Zealand

Paine won’t be in national colours again until the end of November when Australia face Afghanistan in Hobart ahead of the Ashes series. For the players who are also involved in the T20 World Cup, that Test will be their only long-form preparation before playing England as they face two weeks quarantine on returning to Australia.

Although Paine noted England’s struggles in their Test series against New Zealand – which included being bundled for 122 in the second innings at Edgbaston – he wasn’t into much pre-Ashes points-scoring.

“New Zealand are a good team. And secondly, I think if we are being realistic, it’s a really different team England put on the field to what we’re probably going to see in the Ashes,” he said. “Keeping it in perspective it certainly wasn’t England’s strongest team.

“We know when they come here they’re going to get Ben Stokes, going to have Jofra Archer, they’re probably going to play a spinner, and a few other guys particularly the allrounders who really strengthen their side both ways. We know England are a better side than what they put up. So we’ll take a little bit from it but don’t read too much into it at the same time.”

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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