The third Test between India and Australia has been in the news for various reasons – be it injuries, racial abuse or sledging. Australian captain Tim Paine too was involved in sledging and he apologised Tuesday after his wrongdoings towards India’s veteran spinner Ravichandran Ashwin in the drawn Sydney Test. He cited that he was “bitterly disappointed” in his own behaviour.
After the dismissal of Rishabh Pant and Cheteshwar Pujara, Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari held the fort and denied Australia to seal the deal. However, this didn’t go well with Paine and he added that the frustration got the better of him on Monday when he tried to disturb Ashwin on the final day of the third Test.
“I want to apologise for the way I went about things yesterday… my leadership wasn’t good enough, I let the pressure of the game get to me,” the Australian captain said to the reporters.
Notably, the stump microphones caught the word “dickhead” that Paine told Ashwin. But they didn’t pay heed to it and helped keep the series level at 1-1 with a draw.
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“I’m a captain who wants to enjoy the game, who wants to play the game with a smile on his face and I fell short of my expectations and our team standards,” he said.
However, not only Paine but Steve Smith also did something that didn’t go well with fans. He was seen doing shadow batting and then rubbing off the pitch marks with his boots while Pant was batting and eventually Pant had to take a fresh guard. But, the captain backed Smith on his behaviour.
“It’s one of his mannerisms, he was marking centre, he wasn’t by any stretch of the imagination trying to change guard or do anything like that,” he again shared.
The game didn’t go well for Tim Paine too as he dropped three catches during the final day, including a chance from Ravichandran Ashwin right after their exchange of words. “I ended up looking the fool didn’t I? You open your mouth and then you drop a catch,” he concluded.
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