Fully support Steve Smith to gain back Australia captaincy: Tim Paine

Fully support Steve Smith to gain back Australia captaincy: Tim Paine

Smith is now eligible for captaincy after being barred from the same for two years.

Tim Paine and Steve Smith
Tim Paine and Steve Smith. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Tim Paine, the Australian Test skipper, has spoken in favour of Steve Smith to take up the leadership mantle of the national team. Paine took over from Smith midway through the Cape Town in 2018 after the latter got tangled in the ball-tampering scandal. Last year, Paine helped the Aussies retain the Ashes in England, but at the age of 35, he doesn’t seem to have much cricket left ahead of him.

Smith, on the other hand, was barred from Australia captaincy for two years. But now he is eligible to lead the team again. Paine will be 36 by the time the final of the World Test Championship Final takes. But he is happy to find depth in the side, boasting of players, who can be the next skipper.

“We’ve got a number of guys to choose from. [There’s] Steve Smith who’s done it before, or players who are developing underneath like a Travis Head, Alex Carey, Marnus Labuschagne, Pat Cummins is another one. We’re starting to build some real depth so that when my time’s up we’ve got a number of options,” Paine was quoted as saying in India Today.

I haven’t had that conversation with Steve Smith: Paine

Smith has been captaining quite a few sides after his return from the one-year suspension. Last year, he led the Rajasthan Royals in the 2019 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). He was also named as the captain of Welsh Fire in the inaugural edition of The Hundred.

Paine said that the prolific run-scorer relishes leadership, trying to be in the thick of things. Moreover, he is also ready to support Smith in case the latter decides to get back the Australia captaincy.

“I haven’t had that conversation with Smithy, I probably will at some stage no doubt but I think that he’s back captaining the [Indian Premier League’s] Rajasthan Royals and captaining in [English competition] The Hundred, it’s something that he loves doing. If Steve Smith decides that’s the way he wants to go then I’d fully support him in trying to again,” Paine stated.

Paine wishes for his mate to get the opportunity again and also expressed gratitude of playing under him. “When I’m in the role (as captain), I plan to use him as much as I can. He was an excellent captain for me to play under. I hoped when this was all going on he would get the opportunity to lead his country again,” he added.