Openers Cameron Bancroft and David Warner were suspended by Cricket Australia for their roles in the Cape Town ball-tampering scandal. Picture: Mike Hutchings
Openers Cameron Bancroft and David Warner were suspended by Cricket Australia for their roles in the Cape Town ball-tampering scandal. Picture: Mike Hutchings

‘Grumpy with life’: Langer’s plan to rehabilitate ‘angry’ Warner

AUSTRALIA coach Justin Langer is yet to have a sit-down chat with suspended opener David Warner to hear his side of the Cape Town ball-tampering story.

Langer said he was eager to speak with the 31-year-old to understand what was going through his mind the day he became the ringleader of a cheating plot against South Africa.

"I think back to what I saw ... and he just seemed at that time so angry," Langer told new Fox Cricket commentator Mark Howard on his podcast The Howie Games, "and that doesn't make sense.

"I can't wait to have my first sit down with Davey and just ask him what led to that point, mate, where you seemed so grumpy with life. Because we've just got to keep reminding ourselves how much we love the game."

Warner and Steve Smith are almost six months into year-long domestic and international cricket bans imposed by Cricket Australia.

David Warner still has some explaining to do to new national coach Justin Langer. Picture: Getty
David Warner still has some explaining to do to new national coach Justin Langer. Picture: Getty

The most junior party of the ball-tampering trio, Cameron Bancroft, has less than four months to serve.

Western Australia coach Adam Voges has already declared he will welcome Bancroft with open arms back into the team, which Langer previously coached.

Langer said Bancroft became "like one of his sons" during their time together in Perth.

The deep connection made the scenes being beamed back home from Cape Town harder for Langer to stomach.

“I think back to what I saw ... and he just seemed at that time so angry,” Langer told new Fox Cricket commentator Mark Howard.
“I think back to what I saw ... and he just seemed at that time so angry,” Langer told new Fox Cricket commentator Mark Howard.

"I flicked the tele on just before the break - they have this replay and all I can see is this hand with something, which was obviously sandpaper, and I recognise the hand because Cam Bancroft has got really big hands," Langer told The Howie Games.

"Cameron Bancroft is like one of my sons!

"I said to Gracie (daughter), 'Just pray that isn't Cameron', and she said 'What do you mean?' And I said 'just pray.'"

Langer delved deeper into his emotions on the day, saying: "I was angry, I was sad, I was sad for Cameron and Australian cricket and I just knew it was going to have a big impact."

Langer became the coach of Australia after Darren Lehmann retired from the post in the wake of the scandal despite not being involved.

The new coach has since emphasised an importance on regaining the public's trust and rebuilding the image and culture of the Australian cricket team.

His first Test in charge comes against Pakistan in the UAE next month.

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