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Ashes 2017-18: Australia cricket team ‘adults’ don’t need curfew - Darren Lehmann

Darren Lehmann, the coach of the Australian cricket team, has said the team is full of “grown men” and that he can’t envisage slapping a curfew on his players in the wake of the Jonny Bairstow-Cameron Bancroft ‘headbutt’ incident.

cricket Updated: Nov 29, 2017 10:49 IST
Agence France Presse
Agence France Presse
AFP, Adelaide
Ashes 2017-18,The Ashes,Australia vs England
Australian cricket players are “grown men” and do not need a curfew, according to coach Darren Lehmann as the verbal jousts continue ahead of the second Ashes Test between Australia and England in Adelaide. (AFP)

Australian coach Darren Lehmann says he can’t envisage ever slapping a curfew on his players, who were “grown men”, after England opted to ban their team being out after midnight.

The England decision followed Jonny Bairstow’s headbutt on Australian opener Cameron Bancroft in a Perth bar late last month, which only came to light over the weekend.

It came with sensitivity within the England camp about off-field behaviour after the controversy surrounding suspended star all-rounder Ben Stokes, who is facing a police inquiry into a fight outside a Bristol nightclub in September.

Lehmann said it was not something he would consider. “We wouldn’t have curfews but that’s our decision and that (having them) is theirs,” he told reporters in Adelaide late Tuesday ahead of the second Test starting Saturday. “We have faith in the blokes to do the right thing. They’re grown men, they’re adults.”

Former Australian captain and selector Greg Chappell suggested curfews were ineffective.

“If someone is determined to get out and do silly things they’re probably going to do it whether there’s a curfew or not,” he told Melbourne radio station SEN. “Curfews are pretty useless really. If you treat people like adults, most of them will behave like adults. Those who don’t probably don’t last very long.”

England cricket chief Andrew Strauss was cited by on Tuesday as saying there was no drinking culture in his team, but he imposed a midnight curfew on the five-Test Ashes tour regardless.

In laying down the law after the Bairstow incident, he said his players “need to be smarter”. “That’s the reality, they are adults, intelligent adults, and at times they are not using that intelligence in the right way,” he said. “It is a distraction to the team and none of us want that distraction.”

Despite the Stokes controversy and the Bairstow incident, Strauss insisted the team were “good, honest, hardworking cricketers. “They’ve done some great things in an England shirt and I will back them on that to the hilt because I know them,” he said.

First Published: Nov 29, 2017 10:44 IST