Former Australia wicket-keeper, Ian Healy is impressed by Tim Paine’s leadership since he took over in 2018. Paine was rushed to captaincy mid-match in Cape Town as Steve Smith was asked to step down after Cameron Bancroft was caught using sandpaper on the ball to induce reverse swing.
Steve Smith and David Warner were scrapped of their captaincy and vice-captaincy duties during the third Test against South Africa. Paine’s was made the interim skipper. Under Paine, Australia lost the fourth Test against the Proteas and then lost the series in the UAE against Pakistan. There were to fall further down, as India won its first-ever series down under in 2018-19.
However, Tim Paine has done exceedingly well to drag out his team from the abyss. In 2019, Australia retained the Ashes in England for the first time in 18 years- something which neither Ricky Ponting nor Steve Smith could achieve. The Ashes success was sandwiched between whitewashes over Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and New Zealand at home- followed by a thumping victory over Virat Kohli’s side in Adelaide.
Tim Paine could lead Australia for another three years: Ian Healy
While most of the credit for their victories have been given to the batsmen and bowlers, Tim Paine is now being respected highly for changing the fortunes of Australian cricket. Former wicket-keeper, Ian Healy opines that the 36-year-old could lead Australia for another 3 years.
Paine won the Man of the Match in Adelaide for his 73* which kept Australia in the game- shutting down the detractors who have demanded his exclusion for his low scores. Healy feels that the right-hander is doing well in batting and keeping fronts apart from captaincy, hence wouldn’t be a bad idea for Australian selectors to continue with him for a few more years- despite Smith being eligible to lead the side again.
Ian Healy said, “I’m expecting him to play for quite long because he started so late – and it looks like he’s in great shape physically and doing it well. He’s got a job to do so that will keep him interested, keep him motivated to get that Australian side on top again and in the hearts of Australians. I’ve got no problems saying three more years.”
“He’s led a massive cultural revolution, which has got to be draining, so I don’t have a problem if he does surprise me and finish before I reckon he will because he’s taken on so much, but I think he’s about to reap the rewards and enjoy it a lot more,” he added.