Australia head coach Justin Langer has a bad name. The former opening batsman fails to contact the ball enough during the practice sessions and whenever he does so, he gives 10 push-ups to make up for the mistake. Even during the fourth Test at Old Trafford, the 48-year-old was doing push-ups and when asked about the same, the former cricketer revealed the interesting part of the story.
The Australians found themselves in an upbeat mood during the Test that they mostly dominated after the shocking one-wicket loss at Headingley last month. The visitors scored almost 500 runs in their first innings and then secured a 196-run lead over England. In the second essay, Australia declared on 186 for 6 to set a target of 383 for the home team, securing 185-run win and retaining the urn.
Steve Smith continued with his magnificent form found in the series by slamming 211 in the first innings and 82 in the second to help Australia remain in the driver’s seat. England’s hero at Headingley Ben Stokes had a quiet game at Old Trafford, making the visitors’ task easier.
‘I am a very, very good nicker’
Amid the battle on the 22 yards, the Australian camp’s light mood was visible in Langer’s push-ups. When asked about his sudden push-ups after failing to nick a ball to the waiting fielders in practice sessions, Langer said in a press conference: “Well, if I don’t nick them, if I miss them, which happens very rarely these days. I’m a very, very good nicker. I was as a player and I am now (media persons laugh). I used to score a lot of runs to the third man. Probably not the most attractive batsman to watch. But if I miss the nicks, I’ve got to do a few push-ups, that’s all, and if they miss them, then they get a little spray from the coach. So a bit of banter, a bit of humour.”
Langer, who took up the coach’s reins at a time when Australian cricket was going through tough times, has scripted his first major success by retaining the Ashes in England. He was part of the Australian side that had won the Ashes on English soil for the last time in 2001 and had hit a hundred in the fifth and final match at the Oval.
Watch it here
Slips practice with JL
The players love it when JL has to drop and give 'em 10 at training!
Geplaatst door cricket.com.au op Maandag 2 september 2019
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