Cricket Australia have announced the sacking of national coach Mickey Arthur in England today, just days before the first Ashes Test.
The hierarchy of Australian Cricket all met at the conclusion of Australia A’s victory over Gloucester, where the Chief Executive of Cricket Australia, James Sutherland, broke the news to Arthur.
Arthur’s replacement has almost immediately been announced as former international and current Australia A coach Darren Lehmann.
This poorly timed decision is the result of the team’s performance both on and off the field, which have been well below par in recent times.
Warning signs started with Australia’s disastrous 4-0 tour defeat in India. 4 players were stood down for not responding to managements requests to pinpoint why the team was failing – also known as not doing their homework.
Failing to progress past the recent Group stage in the ICC Champions Trophy tournament was another blow to the equation.
This tournament also seen David Warner being stood down for assaulting England player Joe Root in an Australian themed Birmingham Bar.
All of these were major contributing factors for Arthur’s dismissal, which could not have come at a more inconvenient time with the Ashes Series commencing in Nottingham just 16 days from now.
Arthur successfully coached South Africa from 2005 to 2010 where he built a dominating force. At the time, South Africa were the best Test playing nation in the world and interesting enough, had no off-field indiscretions within the playing group. Some describing that this is Australia’s current problem.
Arthur’s success in South Africa was rewarded by becoming the first international identity to coach the Australian national team, signing a contract that was to conclude at the end of the 2015 World Cup.
His number 1 priority given to him by Cricket Australia was to win the Ashes, which adds irony to his sacking just days prior to the first ball being bowled.
Cricket Australia have since announced the appointment 43-year-old Darren Lehmann as Arthur’s replacement.
Lehmann is currently touring in England as coach of the Australia A team and will be conducting actions in his new role effective immediately.
His experience is not only subject to the secondary national squad but all 3 forms of the game with Queensland/Brisbane. He has also coached in the Indian Premier League with Kings XI Punjab and the (now nonexistent) Deccan Chargers.
The domino effect of managerial positions will see former Australian representative Stuart Law offered the now vacant Queensland job upon his recent return from his role as Head Coach of Bangladesh.