18 Jun

Australia head coach Justin Langer is ready to lead a smaller group of support staff on future overseas tours. 40 redundancies were made across Cricket Australia (CA) as part of the organisation's cost-cutting response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cuts to second XI and Australia A matches in the short-term provides an opportunity for Premier (club) cricket and state competitions to play more of a leading role in developing the next generation of players.

The national men's team has traditionally had a selector on duty for overseas tours, but Langer indicated that might not happen for all campaigns in the short term as the organisation looks to reduce expenditure.

"If you'd have asked me 12 weeks or 10 weeks ago, I'd have thought it's nice to have a selector around (on tour)," said Langer, who is part of a three-man national selection panel along with Trevor Hohns and George Bailey.

"But look at the way that these technology platforms (have helped) ... I’m sure there's going to be scope for using a lot more of this technology to make these decisions, to talk to the captain, to talk to the senior players and that’ll be a part of it.”

Langer has explained that previously, with his other responsibilities, coaching his players only took up around 30 per cent of his time, leaving him to put faith in his support staff to fill the void.

But with cost-cutting set to lead to a smaller group of assistants by his side, the former Test opener is ready to roll up his sleeves, adding he's confident his players will be able to adapt to the staff changes.

"We will certainly have less staff on the road with us, but the guys will still get great support. Whether it's remotely; as we’ve seen over this COVID period, there's a lot of support that can be given and serviced remotely.

"We'll be a bit leaner and sharper, that's for sure, but we'll survive, we'll adapt, and the players will still get the service required."

Graeme Hick was the most high-profile CA employee to lose his job on Wednesday, ending the Zimbabwe-born coach’s 7-year stint with the organisation.

"You won't meet a person of greater integrity than Graeme Hick. His worth ethic is unbelievable, his knowledge of the game is unbelievable, so it was a really tough call. It was a really tough day."

John Stephenson


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