‘Some of the commentary surrounding him has been wide of the mark’: CA defends ‘brilliant leader’ Tim Paine
Australian Test captain Tim Paine has been under fire ever since his team lost the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2-1 to India. Though he did a decent job with the bat, his leadership and performance behind the wickets drew criticism from cricket experts and fans.
On Wednesday, Cricket Australia strongly defended Paine after he was retained as captain for the upcoming tour of South Africa. Board’s EGM (National Teams) Ben Oliver stated that some of the commentary surrounding his position ‘has been wide of the mark’.
“Tim Paine has been an outstanding captain since taking over the Australian men’s Test team in incredibly difficult circumstances. Some of the commentary surrounding Tim and his position as Test captain has been wide of the mark,” said Ben Oliver.
He also asserted that Paine has the support of the team, the coach and everyone else at Cricket Australia and the result of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy series has done nothing to diminish that.
“Tim is in career-best form with the bat and, while the series against India was not his best with the gloves by his own admission, he remains in the top echelon of wicketkeepers globally.
“And as a leader, he has been brilliant. To captain a squad through the many challenges presented by the pandemic - not least the unique pressures of hub life - is no easy task and Tim did that with strength, humility and good humour,” Oliver added.
National selector Trevor Horns also backed Paine and stated that the wicketkeeper-batsman has much to offer to the Test cricket.
“Tim Paine was excellent at No.7 against India and as a batsman, wicketkeeper and captain still has much to offer in the Test arena,” Horns said in a statement.
Paine had taken over captaincy in the wake of the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa in 2018 when then skipper Steve Smith and his deputy David Warner were banned for a year for their role in the infamous incident.
(With PTI Inputs)