Australian skipper Tim Paine has once again returned to his sledging mode on Day 2 of the Boxing Day Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Thursday (December 27), but this time with Rohit Sharma.
After being involved in a heated banter with Indian captain Virat Kohli in Perth, Paine, has now targeted the stylish Mumbai batman at MCG and served out some words to Rohit from behind the stumps here.
At the MCG, Paine was caught on the stump microphone talking with Aaron Finch and trying to distract Rohit, challenging him to hit Nathan Lyon for a six and if he succeeds, he would join Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Mumbai Indians during the post-tea session of the Day 2 of third Test here.
Paine said to Finch, who was the close-in fielder, “It's a bit of a toss-up between Royals and Indians for me. But if Rohit hits a six now, I'm changing to Mumbai.”
Meanwhile, Paine was continued with his words behind the stumps for a few overs to Rohit, saying “Too many Poms at the Royals”, referring to Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler playing for the Rajasthan in the IPL, but MI skipper replied to his every verbal bouncer with a smile here.
Paine continued, “You’ve nearly played for every team now” while Finch replied, “Except Bangalore” to which the Aussie skipper questioned, “Except Bangalore?”
On the other hand, Finch admitted that Australia tried to distract Rohit, told media after the day's play at MCG, “We were just trying to have a bit of banter with Rohit. I asked Rohit if we brought mid-on up if he'd take us on and go into IPL mode and he didn't take the bait, unfortunately. It was just a bit of good fun, a bit of banter. It was a long time out there.”
Noteworthy, Ajinkya Rahane (34) who was batting at the other end and led Rajasthan Royals in the 2018 season, while Rohit (63) leads Mumbai Indians in the T20 event -were instrumental in India's ultimate 443/7 declared with their 62 runs stand for the fifth wicket at the MCG.
(With Press Trust of India Inputs)