Australian batsman Marnus Labuschagne has admitted that it is unfortunate that the tussle between the Australian players and head coach Justin Langer turned into a hot topic of public discussion, but has asserted that it is time for both the parties to put behind the differences and move on.
Earlier this week, Langer revealed that he had fruitful ‘heart-to-heart’ chats with the players in which individuals got things off their chest. The Western Australian, during his tenure, has enjoyed a strained relationship with the players, and multiple media leaks hinted towards there being a toxic dressing room environment. Langer, following the discussion, admitted that things were ‘very tough’ but insisted that the talks would help him become a ‘better coach’.
Once the central figure in the controversy due to the ‘Sandwich-gate’, Labuschagne stressed the need for both the players and the coach to put their differences aside and focus on the two huge tournaments lying in front: The T20 World Cup and The Ashes.
“It’s never nice when it comes out like it has, so that’s not how we want to do it,” Labuschagne was quoted as saying by Fox Cricket.
“But we want to make sure that we come together as a team and for those things that have come out, it’s been spoken about that it’s come to a head now and there’s been conversations had, and we can all move forward and have our focus on winning this World Cup and retaining the Ashes.”
Labuschagne, due to plying his trade in England, did not feature in the tours of West Indies and Bangladesh, but the two tours were taxing for all the players and staff involved, not least because of the bubble restrictions that were in place. All individuals are however now back home, reunited with their families, and have a few days to recharge themselves before bracing themselves up for what promises to be an arduous four months.
The 27-year-old claimed that Langer is currently in a much better headspace after spending time with his family, and revealed that it is relieving for players that they finally get to spend time with their loved ones.
“I’ve spoken to the coach, if that’s what you’re asking, yeah, absolutely,” he said.
“I’ve been in contact with him in the last couple of weeks and just having a chat to him.
“I think it’s really nice that those players and coaching support staff are out of quarantine and can spend a bit of time with their families before what is going to be a massive five months.
“I think he’s doing very well now that he’s home and with his family. Being in quarantine and obviously with a big couple of months that they had in Bangladesh (and the West Indies), it’s exciting for him to be back at home and enjoying time with his family.”