Tim Paine, Pat Cummins, Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne
Tim Paine, Pat Cummins, Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne. (Photo: Twitter)

Former Australian captain Steve Waugh reckoned Pat Cummins to be the front-runner of Australia’s Test captaincy role. On Friday, wicketkeeper-batter Tim Paine resigned from Australia’s Test captaincy role after the emergence of an investigation four years ago by Cricket Australia for sending an explicit image to a female co-worker at Cricket Tasmania.

The board will have very few choices between former Australian captain Steve Smith, who was axed after the ball-tampering scandal, or Cummins, who is currently the vice-captain of the Test side.

Tim Paine
Tim Paine (Image Credit: Twitter)

Waugh believes Cummins could lead Australia in the upcoming Ashes series and named Smith to be his deputy.

Waugh also said that South Australian player Alex Carey could don the gloves in case Paine is unavailable to play the Ashes.

“Pat Cummins is definitely the front runner to lead the side in Brisbane for the first Test, he’s the vice-captain, and there is a lot of talk of him taking over Tim Paine sooner or later, even without this incident. So, I think he is the logical choice. For the vice-captain, I don’t know. Someone like Steve Smith might be a good vice-captain. He’s experienced,” Waugh told WA Today.

“I’d say Pat Cummins will take over, and the selectors would be seriously thinking about which wicket-keeper to pick for the first Test. I like Paine as a cricketer. I was a selector when I picked him. Now they will be looking into someone like Alex Carey for the role of the wicket-keeper,” he added.

Talking about the matter related to Paine, Waugh commented that it will be tough for the Tasmania player and also hailed him for his leadership skills.

“I don’t like commenting on things I don’t know. But, look, I mean Tim Paine has done a great job while he has played and even as the captain of Australia. He’s led the team beautifully, and the culture really seems good within the team,” Waugh said.

Steve Waugh
Steve Waugh. Image-Reuters

“I think we’re all just sort of waiting for the next piece of information, but I think it’s going to be tough for him, he’s 36 years of age, coming back from an injury, and he’s got this scandal hanging over his head now, so there is a lot of things against Paine now,” he added.

Cricket Australia is soon expected to name Paine’s successor with just three weeks left for the Ashes.

Also Read: Pat Cummins Is Someone Who Oozes Leadership – Travis Head Backs Pacer To Be The Next Test Captain Following Tim Paine’s Resignation