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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 16 November 2018

Darren Lehmann receives counselling to deal with fall-out from Australia ball-tampering scandal

Steve Smith and David Warner were handed 12-month suspensions, while Cameron Bancroft was given a nine-month suspension

Darren Lehmann addresses the media to announce his decision to step down as Australia coach in March. Getty Images
Darren Lehmann addresses the media to announce his decision to step down as Australia coach in March. Getty Images

Former Australia coach Darren Lehmann has said he is still receiving counselling and remains deeply affected by the fall-out from the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa that engulfed international cricket seven months ago.

Lehmann quit his role with more than a year remaining on his contract despite being cleared of wrongdoing in the Cape Town scandal in March. Captain Steve Smith and vice-captain David Warner were handed 12-month suspensions, while batsman Cameron Bancroft was given a nine-month suspension.

Justin Langer was installed as the new Australia head coach in May.

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"I saw people, and am still seeing people about it. That's a work in progress," Lehmann, 48, told Sydney's Daily Telegraph newspaper on Wednesday.

"I don't think people know how much it affects people behind the scenes, but that's one of those things that you go through. The help of family and close friends got me through."

Lehmann, who is set for a commentary stint with a local radio station after coaching at Cricket Australia's Centre of Excellence in Brisbane, said his former employers could have done more to support him in the wake of Cape Town.

"For me, it was OK. It was a tough time and you had bad days and good days and I'm sure all those other three blokes had worse days," he said.

"You just hope they get the right help, everyone gets the right help when they need it. There could have been more help but they certainly didn't just leave us hanging either."

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Cricket Australia, led by chairman David Peever, has been under fire following the delayed release of the Longstaff review which blamed the board in part for the ball-tampering incident and accused it of allowing an "alpha male culture" to flourish and harm the game.

Lehmann was criticised heavily by media pundits in the wake of Cape Town for failing to sanction his players for on-field misconduct.

However, he denied one of the Longstaff review's findings that players had abused their own staff on match days.

"That might have been before my time. I didn't see that in my time," he said. "They were always respectful and I didn't have a problem with that.

"You're a family travelling around. Some of that has been hurtful saying the culture is not great, because it's not too bad."