Cricket Australia’s treatment of Tim Paine ‘appalling’ – Cricket Tasmania chairman

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The treatment of Tim Paine has been the “worst of an Australia Test captain in 50 years”, says Cricket Tasmania.

Paine stepped down on Friday over an investigation into sexually explicit texts he sent to a female Cricket Tasmania colleague in 2017.

The 36-year-old had been captain of the Australia Test team since 2018.

“The treatment afforded to the Australian Test captain by Cricket Australia has been appalling,” Tasmania chairman Andrew Gaggin said.

The messages came to light as part of a misconduct investigation after the female colleague made allegations against Paine in 2018.

“It is clear that the anger amongst the Tasmania cricket community and general public is palpable,” Gaggin said.

“At a time when Cricket Australia should have supported Tim, he was evidently regarded as dispensable.

“The treatment is the worst since Bill Lawry over 50 years ago.”

Lawry was sacked as captainexternal-link and dropped before the final Test of the 1970-71 Ashes series, and only found out through reporters.

Paine said he was “exonerated” following a Cricket Australia (CA) integrity review but stepped down after learning the messages were to be revealed publicly.

A Cricket Tasmania HR investigation also found there had been no breach of CA’s code of conduct.

Cricket Australia chief executive Richard Freudenstein said on Saturday that the governing body should have handled the investigation differently.

Paine was appointed captain after Steve Smith was suspended following the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa.

When he took over Paine said Australia must improve their “behaviour” and promised to instil a “new culture”.

Before he resigned he was named in Australia’s squad for the Ashes against England, which begins on 8 December.

He scored one while playing for Tasmania’s second XI on Tuesday.

National selector and former Tasmania player George Bailey said he would step aside from voting on whether Paine should remain in the Australia team if there is a split decision.

The decision will be made by Bailey, head coach Justin Langer and selector Tony Dodemaide.

Bailey and Paine are close friends and played together at Tasmania.

“If the panel was not in agreeance with Tim’s position going forward and it was going to come down to a vote, then I would step aside and leave that to Tony and Justin to work through,” Bailey told the Cricket Etc podcast.

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