June 8, 2023

Australia were unable to force victory in the third Test in Sydney as India batted out the final day for the loss of just three wickets to draw the match. The draw means the series remains level at 1-1 going into the fourth and final Test in Brisbane on Friday. India currently hold the Border-Gavaskar Trophy. Paine clashed with India spinner Ravi Ashwin on day five of the Sydney Test and Gavaskar says the Australian’s behaviour was ‘unbefitting of a captain’.

Wicketkeeper-batsman Paine was appointed Australia captain in the aftermath of the ball-tampering scandal in 2018 but Gavaskar believes his days as skipper are ‘numbered’. He told India Today: ‘It was unbefitting of a captain of a national team to be talking about something other than cricket. ‘By all means have a go at the opposition by saying they’re no good or they don’t know how to play.

‘All those things are completely acceptable because you’re talking cricket. But when you talk about something else it shows your frustration. It shows you cannot bear the fact that the opposition is putting up a fight. ‘At the end of the day, India and Ashwin had the last laugh. His days as captain are numbered. ‘They allowed the last five India batsmen to bat for 100 overs without getting a wicket, and this is a very good Australian attack. ‘The bowling changes, the field placings could have made a difference but Tim Paine was more interested in talking to the batsman.

Former India captain Gavaskar added: ‘I would not be surprised if there is a change in the Australian captaincy after this series is over. That’s my view. ‘This game has a wonderful way of biting you on the backside so you are better off concentrating on the game and not trying to upset the opposition with that kind of nonsense.’ Paine, meanwhile, defended his and his team’s conduct following the draw in Sydney. ‘We try our best but we aren’t perfect,’ he said. ‘If the worst thing we’ve done is let the odd f-bomb go then I think we are going OK.’


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