Australia captain Tim Paine apologised on Tuesday (January 12) for his conduct during the final day of the third test against India, saying his sledging of Ravichandran Ashwin fell short of the standards he has set for the team.
Wicketkeeper Paine at one stage called Ashwin a “dickhead” as the spinner and Hanuma Vihari batted through the last three hours of the match to save a draw at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on Monday (January 11) and keep the series tied at 1-1.
Sledging is a term used in cricket where players try to gain an advantage by insulting or making intimidating remarks on the opposing player.
Paine, who apologised to his team mates for his three dropped catches in his post-match news conference on Monday, requested the opportunity to address the media again on Tuesday.
The 36-year-old said he had felt “off” for the entire match, during which he was also fined 15% of his match fee for swearing while complaining to an umpire.
Paine also said Steve Smith was not erasing Rishabh Pant’s guard in the batting crease during the SCG test but merely indulging one of his many idiosyncrasies. Video footage from the stump camera of Smith dragging his boot across the crease on a tense final day of the match went viral on social media and some former players accused him of gamesmanship at best, cheating at worst. Paine said Smith had been upset by the allegations, saying the former captain routinely ‘shadow bats’ when out in the field.
(Production: Jill Gralow, James Redmayne)