Batting legend Sunil Gavaskar on Monday (January 11) lashed out at Australia skipper Tim Paine for sledging India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin during the fifth day’s play in the third Test at SCG.
According to Gavaskar, Paine’s behaviour was “unbefitting” of a leader and it could cost him his captaincy.
See Also: Tim Paine regrets his verbal follies caught on mic; says “need to set good example for kids”
“I don’t know I am not an Australian selector, but his days as captain are numbered. If you allow the Indian team to bat 130-odd overs without getting wickets, this is a very good Australian attack. The bowling changes, the field placements, everything could have made a difference to the result,” Gavaskar told India Today.
Unable to pick wickets on the final day, Paine resorted to sledging and he was caught on stump mic saying to Ashwin: “Can’t wait for you to reach Gabba, Ash.”
In reply, Ashwin said: “Can’t wait for you to come to India as well, that would be your last series.”
The Australian captain didn’t stop there as he abused the offie while suggesting that Indian players like him more than Ashwin.
Paine; Can’t wait to get you to the Gabba, AshAshwin; Can’t wait to get you to India, it’ll be your last seriesPaine; At least my teammates like me, dickhead pic.twitter.com/1XBTmAiAue
— Nick Toovey (@OneTooves) January 11, 2021
“First and foremost, it was unbefitting of a captain of a national team to be talking about something other than cricket,” Gavaskar said.
“By all means, you want to have a go at the opposition, you talk about their cricket, you can tell the batsmen he doesn’t know how to play, you can say he is no good.
“All those kinds of things are completely acceptable because you’re talking cricket. But when you talk about something else, it shows your frustration. It shows you are not able to bear the fact that the opposition is putting up a fight,” he added.
Gavaskar further commented that Paine should have focussed on the game rather than indulging in “nonsense”.
“But see, this game, I had the former Australian captain sitting next to me and doing commentary. He said this game has a wonderful way of coming back and biting you on the back.
“Your best bet is to concentrate on the game and try not to upset the opposition with this kind of nonsense that has no place in the game,” he said.
Tim Paine also dropped three catches behind the stumps on the last day when Australia were in desperate need of wickets to take a 2-1 lead in the series.
“Tim Paine was more interested in talking to the batsman rather than his field placing and bowling changes. So I won’t be surprised if there is a change in the Australian captaincy after the series is over,” Gavaskar said.
“If you drop simple catches, Rishabh Pant got two edges, they were not difficult catches, the last one which he missed off Vihari was also which he could have left to the first slip.
“He was a little bit disturbed, his concentration was not there after that little episode with R Ashwin,” he continued.
Coming to the match, Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari showed great resilience on Day 5 at SCG as the duo batted with grit and determination to deny Australia a likely victory. Ashwin and Vihari’s blockathon lasted 258 balls before both sides decided to shake hands for a draw.
While Ashwin remained unbeaten on 39 off 128 balls, Vihari finished with 23 not out off 161 balls.
Overall, Team India batted out 131 overs to pull off a draw in the third Test. Rishabh Pant (97 off 118 balls) and Cheteshwar Pujara (77 off 205 balls) also played their part with the willow.