In an ideal scenario, Tim Paine would be leading Australia in the first Ashes starting Wednesday on his 37th birthday. But the emergence of a sexting scandal from three years ago led to Paine stepping aside from cricket. He has played 82 internationals for Australia, scoring over 2000 runs.
On the former Australia captain cum wicketkeeper-batter’s birthday, FPJ takes a loot at some of his quotes and comments.
‘We’ll ask Virat’s permission’: India had just beaten Bangladesh at home in their first pink-ball Test. They were due to tour Australia in the following year. Paine, the then Australia captain, was asked if there were talks of having a day/night Test on India’s tour Down Under, when he replied, “We'll ask Virat and see if we can get his permission to play here and maybe even get a pink-ball Test if he's in a good mood.”
‘No one is forcing you to come’: Doubts were cast over the Ashes of 2021-22 due to concerns about months at long in bio-bubbles. After all, England were part of the bubble in the Men’s T20 World Cup and the IPL before that. There were reports about some English players not wanting to tour Down Under due to strict quarantine norms. At a press conference, Paine was asked if there were talks about rescheduling the Ashes, to which he answered, “No one is forcing you to come. If you don't want to come, don't come. The Ashes are going ahead. The first Test is on 8 December, whether Joe [Root] is here or not.”
‘I don’t think Hilf is smart for stats’: Australia were playing Pakistan at Lord’s in 2010. In the second innings, Ben Hilfenhaus had walked in at no. 10 and scored 56, helping Australia get to 334 from 208 for eight. Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting finished his Test career without a half century at Lord’s. That’s when Paine said, “I don't think Hilf is smart enough to recognise that sort of stat. I might let him know later on, so he can get into him if he wants. Hilf is certainly not one for stats.”
‘Smells good’: Australia and Pakistan were playing a Test in 2019 at the Gabba. Mohammad Rizwan walked out at number seven when the then Australia skipper passed a cheeky comment, “Smells good, eh? He smells very nice!”
‘We’d play in Mumbai’: COVID-19 cases in Brisbane meant that India expressed apprehensions at playing a Test at the Gabba. There were reports of changes in venue or India returning after three Tests. When Paine was asked about it, he quipped, “If you rang us up and said it's in Mumbai tomorrow, we'd get on a plane and play it.”