Cricket Tasmania’s long-time Hobart Hurricane and Tassie Tiger Tim Paine talks about his sudden ascendancy to captaining BOTH Australia’s Test Match and One-Day International Squads, plus team harmony, David Warner, his new brand of cricket, batting orders and much more...
How does the privilege of being the new ODI skipper sit alongside being Australia’s new Test captain?
Yeah obviously very honoured. A lot has changed in the last few months for me. I certainly wasn’t expecting to be part of the One Day set-up going forward, that was the information I was given.
But obviously with the events that have happened, I am thrilled to be given another opportunity and to captain the team is a huge privilege.
Was the reasoning for this dual captaincy to give leadership continuity between the Test and One-Day squads and to push on with the reset of the Australian cricket team’s foundations in both jobs?
Yeah I think so. Certainly, initially over the next five or six months, I think (new Australian Head Coach) Justin Langer is on the record as saying he wants that constant message and stability.
So to have the messages coming from the same leaders early in his coaching tenure is going to be really important. So I’m thrilled and I can’t wait to get stuck in and work alongside him.
Has Cricket Australia pointed out that you are captain for this upcoming ODI Series only? Is it a one-off or a more long-term appointment?
No – I’ve just been told for this upcoming June ODI Series over in England.
Again, just to have that continuity in our leadership, for the first few months of Justin’s Australian coaching career.
Look, the way I’ve been told is this – it’s an interim role at the moment, but I am in the side, I am the captain.
So my goal is to certainly make it last – and same with my Test career – to play as long as I can.
I want to be involved in the 2019 World Cup if I possibly can, and this is a huge opportunity for me to go over to where this World Cup is going to be held against the best team in the world.
I want to play well, captain well and show that I’ve got plenty more to add in One Day cricket.
It must feel good on a personal level to be playing cricket at the highest level over the winter months instead of just being back home in Australia or just playing county cricket?
Yeah it looked like I was going to have a decent lay-off until September there at one stage.
But lucky again just to be keeping in the groove, and I feel at my age (33 years old) which is probably strange, that I feel that I’m actually getting better.
And I think the more I play cricket at the moment, the better my body is starting to feel – I’m getting more confidence in my body, in my game, so to continue that is going to be really exciting.
But at the same time, I’ll get a nice period to come back here and train with Tasmania which I’m also looking forward to.
Have you spoken with Justin about how the team will be received in England, as I’m sure there’s going to be a constant barrage from the crowds and the media over there after what happened in South Africa?
I haven’t spoken about it as yet but I’ll certainly be sitting down with Justin in the coming weeks, and as a playing group we’ve got a camp in Brisbane later this month.
So it’s something we’ll certainly have to touch on because I think it’s definitely going to be raised.
I think the English are going to be ‘basking in the glory’ of what’s happened, but having said that, playing in England – the crowds and the media are always coming at us with something.
So it won’t be too foreign, it’s just probably going to be the level of it based on the seriousness of what’s happened.
The guys will certainly have to be ready for that, but the positive thing is we’re going over there to play cricket.
So if we can play well as a team and show that we’re moving forward, then hopefully the talk around that stuff that has happened will die off.
There was an article written recently about some team disharmony – did you read it, what’s your response to it, and is there any truth to it?
<Respected senior News Corp sports journalist Robert Craddock had questioned whether Warner could fit back into a new-look team under the leadership of coach Justin Langer given "half the players can't stand him" and don't want him in the side.
"Langer wants mateship in the team and I don’t believe mateship and Warner are compatible," Craddock told SEN Radio.
"Because half the players can't stand him, they contacted Cricket Australia saying they didn’t want to play with him again.
"Now, they should have no choice in that, it’s not their decision. But that’s the vibe.
"If (Langer) wants cultural shift, how do you have cultural shift and Warner in the same team? That’s my question.">
Yeah I did see it – I was quite surprised by it. I certainly like (Robert) ‘Crash’ Craddock's writing and when he's on TV I'm certainly a fan of his.
But I thought he was just a little bit off the mark there and probably really unfair on David Warner as a person and as a cricketer.
David is someone who's certainly highly competitive on the field and sometimes that can rub people and oppositions up the wrong way.
But certainly within our team he's someone with that energy and competitiveness that we actually love playing with.
They were disappointing comments and it's certainly not the way David is held within our team.
There's a side of David that people don't know – he's very loyal and really caring and a good team man to have around – so that article was disappointing.
How would you describe the dynamics within the team now?
Well we haven’t been together since and certainly that week in South Africa was really difficult, I think everyone said that.
But guys in that team get along well and David is a respected member of that team, he always has been.
For as long as I've been around the team he's been really well liked and really well received by his teammates.
So he wasn’t ostracised from the team following what happened in that South Africa Test?
No he wasn’t actually. There was maybe a day or two there where guys were in and out of the investigation.
And when you come home, that's how it is in Australia; we don’t live together – we’re based all around the country.
But I know the guys have kept in touch via texts or phone calls and that's something we've got to continue to work on – it’s one of the challenges of the Australian team.
Justin Langer has said he has been in contact with the three suspended players. Have you been in contact with them as well?
Yeah I’ve been in contact with all three and all three are certainly going to be welcome back into our team given they are prepared to toe the line with our new brand cricket which I know they will.
I know they’ll all do the right thing and score enough runs to be back in our side and they’ll certainly be welcomed back.
So you’d be happy to have David Warner back in your team if you’re still captain when that time comes?
Yep - absolutely.
You spoke just then about the ‘new brand of cricket’ – how would you describe it and what do you want to see while at the helm?
Yeah I’ve got to sit down with Justin and talk about exactly how that will look. But Justin and I are certainly on the same page with the way we want it to look.
There’s just going to be a fine line between being still a really competitive hard Australian cricket team and being able to be a bit more respectful of our opposition and the game.
I think at times we’ve gotten a little bit carried away in trying to intimidate teams when we’ve just got to make sure we focus more on our skill.
Look, cricket is a competitive game, so there’s going to be times where it does get heated. We’ve just got to make sure we’re doing the right thing at all times.
Are you going to introduce the pre-game handshake in the One Day Series like you did in that last Test match against South Africa?
Yeah I’m going to try to. It’s something that I think is a good way to start a series.
I don’t think we’re going to do it for every game or every Test but certainly I will offer that to any captain I play against and hopefully they’re up for it.
Do you know your ‘playing’ role in the One Day team? Obviously for Tasmania you open the batting and have the gloves, but there’s two wicketkeepers named in this ODI Tour squad (Paine/Alex Carey).
I haven’t had a great deal of communication around my batting. I know I will be wicketkeeping.
Obviously our batting order at the moment is a little bit up in the air, we've got a few new guys coming into it. I think I'll be batting probably down at Number 7.
We've got D'Arcy Short and Shaun Marsh who've come into the squad, so I'd imagine they'd be the first options to replace Davey Warner.
We've also got Alex Carey, who's batted a lot at the top of the order for South Australia and done really well.
<NB: Paine opens in one-day cricket domestically and his first stint in the ODI side came at the top of the order, including a century against England at Trent Bridge in 2009. But the right-hander expects to fill the No.7 spot, where he batted in Australia's 1-4 series loss to England in January.>
Australia’s 2018 Qantas ODI Tour Of England:
Thursday, June 7: Warm-Up v Sussex, Hove (D/N)
Saturday, June 9: Warm-Up v Middlesex, Lords
Wednesday, June 13: First ODI, The Oval (D/N)
Saturday, June 16: Second ODI, Cardiff
Tuesday, June 19: Third ODI, Trent Bridge (D/N)
Thursday, June 21: Fourth ODI, Durham (D/N)
Sunday, June 24: Fifth ODI, Old Trafford
Wednesday, June 27: Only T20, Edgbaston (D/N)
Australia's One Day International Tour Squad:
Tim Paine (captain) - Tasmania (Tasmanian Tigers / Hobart Hurricanes)
Aaron Finch (vice-captain) – Victoria
Ashton Agar - Western Australia
Alex Carey - South Australia
Josh Hazlewood - New South Wales
Travis Head - South Australia
Nathan Lyon - New South Wales
Glenn Maxwell – Victoria
Shaun Marsh - Western Australia
Jhye Richardson - Western Australia
Kane Richardson - South Australia
D’Arcy Short - Western Australia (Hobart Hurricanes)
Billy Stanlake – Queensland
Marcus Stoinis - Western Australia
Andrew Tye - Western Australia
The 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup is the 12th edition of the Cricket World Cup, scheduled to be hosted by England and Wales from 30 May to 14 July 2019.
Australia's 2019 ICC ODI World Cup Schedule:
v Afghanistan at Bristol, June 1 (D/N)
v West Indies at Trent Bridge, June 6
v India at The Oval, June 9
v Pakistan at Taunton, June 12
v Sri Lanka at The Oval, June 15
v Bangladesh at Trent Bridge, June 20
v England at Lord's, June 25
v New Zealand at Lord's, June 29 (D/N)
v South Africa at Old Trafford, July 6 (D/N)