Tim Paine has admitted he was “made to look the fool” and is “bitterly disappointed” in his behaviour during the third Test at the SCG as he apologised for his performance against India.
The Australia captain has come under huge criticism for his behaviour behind the sticks, being fined for swearing at the umpire and complaining about DRS as well as his clashes with Ravi Ashwin, whom he dropped immediately after sledging him.
That was one of three catches dropped by Paine himself on a frustrating Test for the hosts which retrospectively hinged on some poor tactical calls by the skipper.
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‘Can’t wait to get you to the Gabba Ash’
But Paine was very honest in fronting up to how he “let himself down” throughout the five days and apologised for his behaviour in intense conditions.
“I want to apologise for the way I went about things yesterday. I’m someone who prides themselves on the way I lead this team and yesterday was a poor reflection of the team,” Paine said.
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“I let the pressure of the game get to me. It affected my mood and my performance. Initially I reflected purely on my wicketkeeping. Last night I reflected on the whole game.
“I’ve had a really poor game as a leader. I’m a captain who enjoys the game, and wants to play… yesterday I fell short of my expectations and our team’s standards. I’m human. I want to apologise for the mistakes I made yesterday.
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Paine adds to his rough day
“It’s certainly not a reflection of the way I want to lead this team. We’ve set high standards over the last few months and … I’m bitterly disappointed.
“My mood throughout the whole Test match was a bit off. The way I spoke to the umpires was unacceptable.
“I’ve got to cop that on the chin. It’s certainly not a reflection of how I want to do it going forward.
“I fell short of my own standards and expectations. I’m bitterly disappointed with that.”
Another criticism of Paine was that given all of the talk he was giving behind the stumps, he wasn’t able to back it up, dropping the most catches he ever has in an innings since coming into the Australian team for the 2017/18 Ashes series.
“You behave like I did in this Test match and then perform like that, you open yourself up to criticism,” Paine added.
“So I was fully expecting it and as I said this morning and yesterday, I’m happy to cop that on the chin.
“I realised the mistakes I made yesterday, both from a leadership and wicket-keeping point of view, I have to cop that criticism now and move on.
“For me, the most important thing is that I understand where I went wrong and how I can improve and I had some pretty honest conversations with JL and our staff last night and moved on to how I can improve for the Gabba.”
Paine drops Pant twice
He also revealed he spoke to Ashwin after the game to clear the air and insisted there was no lingering bad blood between the pair.
“I spoke to him really quickly after the game yesterday,” Paine said. “As I said to him, I ended up looking the fool, didn’t I? You open your mouth and drop the catch, we had a bit of a laugh about that.
“I think the relations between the two teams have been great, there’s a healthy respect, it’s very competitive.
“When it’s all said and done, the way the spirit of this series has been played, 99 per cent of the time it’s been excellent.
“Everything was fine [with Ashwin].”