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'I feel like the director of a soap opera' – Langer laments Bancroft interview

By Opta
Justin Langer slams Cameron Bancroft

Melbourne, December 31: Australia head coach Justin Langer said he feels like the "director of a soap opera" following Cameron Bancroft's interview regarding David Warner's role in the ball-tampering scandal.

Bancroft – whose nine-month suspension for his role in the ball-tampering controversy against South Africa in March expired on Saturday – discussed Warner's involvement in the fiasco during an interview aired on Boxing Day.

Australia were facing India in the third Test in Melbourne when Bancroft opened up on Warner's role and confirmed the left-armed batsman – who was banned for 12 months along with Steve Smith – devised the plan to alter the condition of the ball with sandpaper.

Asked about the interview, Langer told reporters: "I feel like the director of a soap opera. I honestly do.

"Coaching is about man management and looking after people, caring for people, and that was just another distraction last week.

"There's a really good process in place that we're going to go through to get the boys back in the team, I liked seeing Cameron play last night."

Langer, meanwhile, said no one is "absolutely banging the door down" as he addressed Australia's batting woes.

India retained the Border-Gavaskar trophy with a comprehensive 137-run win against Australia at the MCG on Sunday.

Australia's batting woes were highlighted as under-fire opener Aaron Finch continued to struggle, while Mitch Marsh failed to capitalise on his recall, having missed the opening two Tests.

Marnus Labuschagne has been added to a 14-man squad for the fourth and final Test in Sydney, starting Thursday.

Langer said: "Try being a selector at the moment. We've got to be careful not to reward poor performances but … it's not as if the guys are absolutely banging the door down.

"Most of our batters knocking on the door are averaging in the 30s [in the Sheffield Shield]."

"The art of batting, we've got some work to do," Langer added. "Whether it's the system … whether it's something we've got to change in our psyche, I'm not sure. It's something everyone is looking at."

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Story first published: Monday, December 31, 2018, 10:00 [IST]
Other articles published on Dec 31, 2018
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