In a shocking piece of news, Australia Test skipper Tim Paine has announced to quit from Test captaincy within just three weeks ahead of the start of the Ashes. The wicketkeeper-batter announced this decision during a press conference in Hobart on Friday (November 19). Paine’s sudden wish to step down from the role was due to the revelations made against him of a ‘se*ting’ incident, which involved a former Cricket Tasmania employee in 2017.
Cricket Australia (CA) have accepted the resignation of Paine. CA chairman Richard Freudenstein said the wicketkeeper batter felt it was best to step down from the family interest’s point of view. “Tim felt it was in the best interests of his family and Australian cricket to take this decision to step down as captain.
“The Board has accepted Tim’s resignation and will now work through a process with the National Selection Panel of identifying and appointing a new captain,” Freudenstein said according to Fox Cricket.
Paine broke down while announcing the decision. He, however, has said will remain part of the team. He also admitted to the se*ting incident and said he regrets it doing back then. “Today I am announcing my decision to stand down as captain of the Australian men’s cricket team. It’s a difficult decision, but the right one for me, my family, and cricket. Nearly four years ago, I was involved in a text exchange with a then-colleague,” he said.
The first Ashes Test match is due to start in Brisbane on December 8. Pat Cummins, who is the current vice-captain of the Australian Test team is now set to captain the side. If CA announces Cummins as the skipper then he will become the first fast bowler to lead the side in 65 years. The 28-year-old will also become the 47th player to captain the Australian team if CA approves this decision.
If Paine does not play the first Test match, then Alex Carey and Josh Inglis are the likely candidates to do wicketkeeping duties.