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Cricket world at war over Tim Paine scandal as Tasmanians issue 223 word statement defending him

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Cricket Tasmania has fired off a blistering statement defending former Test captain Tim Paine – claiming their colleagues on the mainland have treated him ‘appallingly’.

In a stunning attack the sporting body unleashed on Cricket Australia in a 223 word media statement. 

In contrast, Abraham Lincoln’s famous Gettysburg address was only slightly longer at 271 words. 

Like the late US President’s speech, there is plenty of fired up passion from CT in defending one of its own. 

Cricket Tasmania’s (CT) stunning attack on Cricket Australia (CA), accuses the national governing body of treating Tim Paine ‘appallingly’ over sexting revelations.

Tim Paine of Tasmania leaves the field after being dismissed during day two of the second XI cricket match between Tasmania and South Australia Second XI, at the Lindisfarne Cricket Club, in Tasmania, Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Tim Paine of Tasmania leaves the field after being dismissed during day two of the second XI cricket match between Tasmania and South Australia Second XI, at the Lindisfarne Cricket Club, in Tasmania, Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Bonnie said she has 'a lot of sympathy' for her husband and said the pair have overcome the matter, despite her considering leaving him at the time

Bonnie said she has ‘a lot of sympathy’ for her husband and said the pair have overcome the matter, despite her considering leaving him at the time

Paine stood down as Test skipper on Friday after it was revealed he sent sexualised messages and an inappropriate image to a female Cricket Tasmania colleague in 2017.

‘In conversations I have had in recent days it is clear that the anger amongst the Tasmanian cricket community and general public is palpable,’ Cricket Tasmania chairman Andrew Gaggin said.

Cricket Tasmania statement defending Tim Paine – in full 

At its meeting on November 22 the Cricket Tasmania Board unanimously expressed its continuing support of Tim Paine and condemnation of his treatment by Cricket Australia

Cricket Tasmania chairman Andrew Gaggin said:

‘In conversations I have had in recent days it is clear that the anger amongst the Tasmanian cricket community and general public is palpable. 

‘Tim Paine has been a beacon for Australian cricket over the past four years and instrumental in salvaging the reputation of the national team after the calamity of Cape Town. 

‘Yet, at a time when CA should have supported Tim, he was evidently regarded as dispensable. 

‘The treatment afforded to the Australian Test captain by Cricket Australia has been appalling, and the worst since Bill Lawry over 50 years ago

‘The Cricket Tasmania Board reaffirmed its view that Paine should not have been put in a position where he felt the need to resign over an incident that was determined by an independent inquiry at the time to not be a breach of the Code of Conduct and was a consensual and private exchange that occurred between two mature adults and was not repeated.’

Cricket Tasmania will continue to support Tim on and off the field and is very pleased to see his impressive return in the Second XI game Tasmania is currently playing against South Australia.

‘Tim Paine has been a beacon for Australian cricket over the past four years and instrumental in salvaging the reputation of the national team after the calamity of Cape Town [ball tampering saga].’

Mr Gaggin added that at a time when CA should have supported Paine, ‘he was evidently regarded as dispensable’.

‘The treatment afforded to the Australian Test captain by Cricket Australia has been appalling, and the worst since Bill Lawry over 50 years ago.’

Lawry was infamously dropped as a player and Test skipper in the early 1970s, finding out about the decision via reporters and not selectors.

Cricket Tasmania became aware of the texts in mid-2018, with an investigation by the organisation and Cricket Australia clearing Paine of any code of conduct breaches.

Paine is still part of Australia’s Ashes squad before the first Test against England on December 8 and is making his return from neck surgery for Tasmania in a second XI fixture in Hobart.

The 36-year-old got six catches on Monday but was out for just one batting at No 5 on Tuesday, trapped lbw second ball to spinner Sam Kerber.

Gaggin said the Cricket Tasmanian board met on Monday where it unanimously expressed support for Paine and ‘condemned’ his treatment by Cricket Australia.

‘The Cricket Tasmania board reaffirmed its view that Paine should not have been put in a position where he felt the need to resign over an incident that was determined by an independent inquiry at the time to not be a breach of the code of conduct and was a consensual and private exchange that occurred between two mature adults and was not repeated,’ he said.

CT previously said the text messages came to their attention when the woman involved was charged with stealing from the organisation, something she denies.

Paine was appointed Test captain in early 2018 after the ball tampering saga, before Cricket Tasmania and Cricket Australia say they became aware of the texts.

CA chairman Richard Freudenstein, who wasn’t in the role at the time, said the current board would have stripped Paine of the captaincy.

Questions have been asked about the merits of keeping Paine in the side, considering he’ll turn 37 when the first Ashes Test begins and his lack of match practice.

Chairman of selector and Paine’s close friend George Bailey has indicated he won’t make a casting vote if fellow selector Tony Dodemaide and coach Justin Langer are split on whether to pick the Tasmanian.

On Monday, Paine looked less than impressed as he was photographed on the sidelines of the second XI match between Tasmania and South Australia in Hobart.

Former Australian Test captain Tim Paine is seen between innings during the Second XI cricket match between Tasmania and South Australia at Lindisfarne Memorial Park in Hobart on Monday, November 22, 2021

Former Australian Test captain Tim Paine is seen between innings during the Second XI cricket match between Tasmania and South Australia at Lindisfarne Memorial Park in Hobart on Monday, November 22, 2021

The attention he was getting from the press was unwanted, though hardly unexpected given the revelations about him in recent days. 

While Paine believes the scandal was the result of his ‘inflated ego’ as a Test cricketer, he said he doesn’t know why he did it. 

His text exchange with a Cricket Tasmania staffer included an unsolicited’ picture of his genitals and ‘graphic sexual comments’, that caused her to complain seven months later. 

The married father-of-two was investigated and cleared of wrongdoing by Cricket Australia in 2018, when he confessed to wife Bonnie that he sexted the woman over the course of 18 hours.

But the matter was kept secret for three years until the messages were made public on Friday afternoon and Paine tearfully resigned as Australian captain.    

He had targeted a return to the field via lower grade cricket before the sexting scandal emerged. 

Paine says he told wife Bonnie (pictured) in mid-2018 after Cricket Tasmania and Cricket Australia investigated the incident between him and the young staffer

Paine says he told wife Bonnie (pictured) in mid-2018 after Cricket Tasmania and Cricket Australia investigated the incident between him and the young staffer

Paine announced his resignation as captain in a statement on Friday afternoon and held a press conference and 2.30pm on Friday where he tearfully apologised

Paine announced his resignation as captain in a statement on Friday afternoon and held a press conference and 2.30pm on Friday where he tearfully apologised

Paine, who opened up on the scandal alongside his wife Bonnie, said he would regularly talk with the woman about cricket-related things until one day it took a ‘flirtatious’ turn.

‘There was nothing unusual about it. But then, one text was sent that was a little open-ended, and it became a flirtatious exchange that should never have,’ he said.

The former test captain said he informed his wife of the 2017 exchange as soon as it was made known to Cricket Tasmania in mid-2018, which shook the foundations of their marriage.

‘As soon as a complaint was lodged. I told her everything. I admitted to all of it. As hard as that was, it was the best thing I did,’ Paine said.

Paine, who opened up on the scandal alongside his wife Bonnie (pictured together), said he would regularly talk with the woman about cricket-related things until one day it took a 'flirtatious' turn

Paine, who opened up on the scandal alongside his wife Bonnie (pictured together), said he would regularly talk with the woman about cricket-related things until one day it took a ‘flirtatious’ turn 

Bonnie said she has ‘a lot of sympathy’ for her husband and said the pair overcame his betrayal, despite her considering leaving him at the time.  

‘I had mixed emotions, and I felt betrayed, and I felt hurt, upset and I felt pissed off, I also had feelings of gratitude because he was being so honest with me. I thought, OK, do I walk? Or forgive and rebuild? I chose the latter,’ she told the Herald Sun.

‘It was hard, he has forgiven me for things, and people have forgiven me in my past, so I just felt I owed it to Tim to try and forgive.’  

Tim and Bonnie Paine have been together for more than 10 years and have two children, a son named Charlie and daughter named Milla

Tim and Bonnie Paine have been together for more than 10 years and have two children, a son named Charlie and daughter named Milla

‘It was sad to see what happened last Friday on so many levels and the circumstances in which Tim was forced to stand down. I really feel for him, what he’s going through, and what his family is going through,’ he wrote in the Herald Sun.

‘Let’s just for a moment put it in perspective. It happened four years ago, and a full Cricket Australia investigation cleared him to take the captaincy. His family stood by him then, and now.’  

Paine announced his resignation as captain in a statement on Friday afternoon and held a press conference and 2.30pm on Friday where he tearfully apologised.

‘It’s an incredibly difficult decision, but the right one for me, my family, and cricket,’ he said.

Cricket Tasmania board statement on Tim Paine and his treatment by Cricket Australia

Cricket Tasmania board statement on Tim Paine and his treatment by Cricket Australia

The woman at the centre of the scandal was a Cricket Tasmania employee whom Paine knew from playing state cricket.

She sent a letter of complaint to Cricket Australia and Cricket Tasmania in 2018 – sparking an investigation – and she also wrote to the Australian Human Rights Commission about the texts.

The woman said she was offended by ‘Mr Paine’s sexually explicit, unwelcome and unsolicited picture of his genitals and his graphic sexual comments’.

Cricket Tasmania on Friday said the complaint came about only after the woman was charged with stealing from the organisation. The case still before the courts.   



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Written by Bourbiza Mohamed

A technology enthusiast and a passionate writer in the field of information technology, cyber security, and blockchain

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