Ashes 2020-21: Justin Langer backed to continue as Australia coach

Justin Langer
Langer scored 7696 Test runs at an average of 45.27 during his playing career and was Australia's top-scorer in the famous 2005 Ashes series

Australia coach Justin Langer has been backed to lead the team into this year's Ashes series against England despite their recent dip in form.

Cricket Australia chief Nick Hockley praised the "incredible job" Langer has done in his three years in the role.

"His efforts have restored public faith in the national team," added Hockley, noting Langer's contract runs through to the middle of 2022.

Australia have just suffered a shock 4-1 Twenty20 series defeat by Bangladesh.

They had never lost to Bangladesh in four previous meetings over the format.

Australia have also lost T20 series to the West Indies and New Zealand, and a Test series against India this year.

Langer was appointed in May 2018, replacing Darren Lehmann, who had resigned in the wake of a ball-tampering scandal.

Captain Steve Smith, vice-captain David Warner and batsman Cameron Bancroft were found to worked together to illegally scuff the ball during a series against South Africa. Lehmann was cleared of any involvement in the scheme.

"Justin has done an incredible job in raising the culture, values and behaviours of the Australian men's team since he took on the role in 2018," said Hockley.

Langer, 50, has come under fire, however, with claims that his coaching methods have been highlighted as an area of concern during an internal Cricket Australia review and reports that his temper unsettled members of the backroom staff.external-link

England have won the Ashes in Australia only once in the past 34 years - a 3-1 series victory in 2010-11.

Australia's defence of the Ashes, which they retained with a drawn 2-2 series in England in 2019, is set to begin on 8 December at the The Gabba in Brisbane.

England and Wales Cricket Board chief executive Tom Harrison has said he is "confident" the series will go ahead despite some players contemplating pulling out of the tour unless their families can be granted dispensation to join them in Australia.

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