Australia have appointed Darren Lehmann as their new manager following the sacking of Mickey Arthur only 16 days before the Ashes starts. Lehmann takes over the role as the Australian coach immediately in attempt to get his international side ready for the Ashes tournament which takes place in just over a fortnight’s time. Australia’s new coach was a very successful player when he played in 1996 to 2005 playing 27 Tests and 117 one-day internationals before he went on to manage Australia A.
Mickey Arthur admitted that he was surprised by him being sacked after he was criticised by the press for his team’s form on and off the field. Arthur was only in charge of Australia for 19 Tests winning 10 of those and losing 6. Yet, one of the biggest reasons for his firing would probably have been his teams display off the field with the big troublemaker being David Warner. The Australian batsman was previously fined £3,700 for posting comments on Twitter about journalists that were deemed inappropriate and abusive.
David Warner did not learn from his mistakes before as he was fined a further £7,000 and was banned from cricket until the opening match of the Ashes for having a confrontation with, and punching an England cricketer. Warner was punished for punching England’s Joe Root in a bar on the night England had defeated Australia in the ICC Champions Trophy. Darren Lehmann is going to have a tough job to keep his team under control and out of trouble.
Not only will Darren Lehmann need to improve the behaviour of his team off the field, but he will certainly need to improve their game on it. Australia have not been performing up to scratch finishing bottom of Group A not winning a single one of their matches against England, New Zealand or Sri Lanka. Lehmann will need his team to start playing properly if he is going to have any chance of defeating England in the Ashes tournament to regain the Ashes urn.
Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland, who appointed Darren Lehmann, admitted, “The timing is far from ideal but we didn’t feel we could sit back and hope matters would change without addressing issues critical to a high-performing team culture. Recent on-field results have been too inconsistent. Discipline, consistency of behaviour and accountability for performance are all key ingredients that need to improve. We see that the head coach is ultimately responsible for that.”
Author Daniel Foster.
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