Hobart : Former Australia Test skipper Tim Paine believes Cricket Australia (CA) cast him aside too easily following the ‘sexting scandal’, involving him and a former Cricket Tasmania employee, which came in public domain weeks before the Ashes at home.
Paine stepped down as skipper following the disclosure, with pace bowler Pat Cummins emerging as CA’s choice to lead the Test side.On Wednesday, Paine opened up on his departure from the team setup, indicating CA let him go too quickly in the wake of the episode that happened during the 2017/2018 Ashes series but came in public domain four years later.
The 37-year-old Paine has since been cleared of any wrongdoing. The wicketkeeper-batter recently released his autobiography, ‘The Price Paid’, where he has reportedly shed light on the saga and the treatment he received from CA.
“Clearly I do (feel Cricket Australia cast me aside too easily), but again it’s not something I want to really complain about, the book is me having my say, getting it off my chest and then being able to move on,” Paine told SEN’s Whateley on Wednesday.
“I felt like it was dealt with four years ago, certainly from a Cricket Australia perspective and from a personal perspective with my family and then to have that sort of flipped on its head at the 11th hour, the night before it’s going to go public, is something that I’m still disappointed in.
“Every decision they make is not going to be wholly accepted or agreed with by everyone, so I fell on the wrong side of that decision, no doubt about that, it hurt me,” Paine added.Paine also said the saga had taken away any enjoyment he had for the sport for a significant period of time.
“The public fallout of it was quite challenging, it was a bit gruesome, it was very embarrassing for me,” he said.”It was difficult, I sort of fell out of love with the game, obviously I knew I’d done the wrong thing, I just found (cricket) really hard to watch to be honest, not because I didn’t like the game or I was dirty on it or anyone involved in it, it was just I’d looked forward to that home Ashes series, captaining your country for so long.
“The most painful part of it was that I had to take people that I really cared about through that, through no fault of their own. The Australian team as it is, when you’re retiring, whether it’s a good or bad retirement, it moves on really quickly, so for me to stand there and have to watch it, I found it a real challenge,” he added.
Now Paine has made a return to the cricket field, emerging from the scandal and the neck surgery he underwent earlier this year, playing for his home state Tasmania in the Sheffield Shield.
“There’s a few reasons I came back, first I wanted to give a bit back to Tassie (Tasmania) cricket and see if I can help some young guys along their journey now, I’ve been through a lot, good and bad, I think I’ve got a bit to offer in that space so to help some young guys there,” he said.
“Clearly my last memories of cricket had I not played again were pretty ordinary ones so, for me to just sort of go out and have a good year or two playing for Tasmania, enjoying the game again is something that is really important to me.
I’ve been pretty quiet for the last couple of months but really happy now to be coming out the other side of it.”