Australia skipper Tim Paine has made it clear that they won’t comprise with their competitive spirit in the forthcoming five-match ODI series against England, starting on June 13.
Paine was shouldered with the responsibility to lead Australia following the ball-tampering saga in South Africa in March. Cricket Australia had imposed a one-year ban on Paine’s predecessor Steve Smith and his vice-captain David Warner for their involvement in the ball-tampering scandal, while rookie opener Cameron Bancroft was handed a 9-month suspension from international cricket.
In the aftermath of the incident, Australian cricket team went through a stern public scrutiny with folks criticizing their team culture and win-at-all-costs attitude.
“We want to be more respectful in the way we go about it. We don’t think we’re going to change the way we play in a really competitive spirit. Certainly, we’re not going to be silent out on the field, we’re going to be speaking…. But there’s got to be a respectful element to it. We know what’s right and we know what’s wrong,” Paine said while addressing the media on Wednesday (June 6).
The newly appointed coach Justin Langer highlighted the difference between “abuse and banter”, saying that there is no room for the former.
“You’re going to hear us talking through the stump mic and see us talking on the ground.” Langer, who replaced Darren Lehmann as a coach, said.
The former Australia opener also clarified that the team members are very clear about their values.
“Even if we were so nice, everyone’s going to still think we’re a bunch of rough-head Australians. That’s just how it’s going to be,” he added.
Talking about the sledging, Langer said: “We’ll behave well on the field and off the field and we’ll still be called sledging Australians. It’s been happening for the last 30 years. Call it banter, sledging, whatever you want. Everyone talks about sledging, but there’s a difference between banter and abuse. And abuse is no good.”
“There’s no room for abuse anywhere, but there’s plenty of room for banter, or what we call sledging. It’s a fun part of the game. It is actually part of the game,” he concluded.
Australia ODI squad against England:
Tim Paine(c), Aaron Finch, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Travis Head, Nathan Lyon, Glenn Maxwell, Shaun Marsh, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, D Arcy Short, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye, Michael Neser