South Africa v Australia T20I - Men's
Langer targets Aussie legends for coaching roles
Justin Langer continues to bring former Australia players back into the fold, with Mike Hussey to join the squad in South Africa
11 February 2020, 04:21 PM AEST
World Cup winner Mike Hussey will re-join the coaching staff of the Australian men's team this week, while former allrounder Andrew Symonds has been sounded out for a similar mentoring role later this year.
Hussey was part of Australia's coaching staff for their T20 campaign at the start of the home summer and will head to South Africa this week for the T20 leg of their six-match white-ball campaign against the Proteas.
Head coach Justin Langer has been an advocate of bringing Australia's past greats back into the fold to mentor and coach the current crop of players and he's hoping Symonds can join the squad for their short T20 tour of New Zealand in late March.
Former captain Ricky Ponting has enjoyed several stints with the national side in recent years, most recently at the 50-over World Cup in 2019, while former skipper Steve Waugh joined Langer's staff for the Ashes in the UK.
"One of the things we’ve tried to do is bring some of the legends back around the team," Langer said on Sunday.
"Our young guys and all our players can learn so much (from them), they're great mentors. We had 'Punter' (Ponting), we had Steve Waugh for the Ashes, we’re looking at getting Andrew Symonds to come to New Zealand with us … and Mike Hussey is coming to South Africa.
"It's a really good initiative."
Between them, Hussey and Symonds scored almost 20,000 international runs for Australia and were both part of the successful 2007 World Cup campaign, while Symonds also won the tournament in 2003.
Hussey has also enjoyed a coaching role with Chennai Super Kings in recent years and concedes a temporary stint with a team can present difficult challenges for a coach.
"I did a similar thing a couple of years ago and I found it a little bit awkward," he said last year. "I didn't know how much to say and how little to say.
"This time I feel a bit more confident about it ... I've got a pretty good relationship with a lot of the guys anyway. I've played with some of them so there's always some level of understanding.
"I do love coaching. The difficult thing is, do I want to do it on a full-time basis and be back on the road for 10 months of the year with a young family? That's not something I'm interested in at the moment.
"I remember when I was playing, I loved having the past players come into the dressing room to be part of the team. But then when you're out of it, you can feel a bit awkward and feel like you're encroaching on their time and space. So this has made all that easier."
Australia will depart for South Africa on Thursday for a three-match T20 series and three-game ODI campaign, with the tour starting in Johannesburg on February 21.
Australia's Qantas Tour of South Africa 2020
Australia T20 squad: Aaron Finch (c), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Mitch Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa
Australia ODI squad: Aaron Finch (c), Ashton Agar, Alex Carey (vc), Pat Cummins (vc), Josh Hazlewood, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitch Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa