Following Australia’s 5-0 demolition by England, Tim Paine is uncertain about his future in the One-Day International side.
Having overseen one of Australia’s worst series defeats, there are concerns over Paine’s position in the line-up, and his status as captain.
Paine was handed the captaincy for the ODI series in the absence of Steven Smith, who is currently serving a 12-month ban for his role in the ball-tampering episode in Cape Town in March. At the time of Paine’s appointment, Trevor Hohns, Australia’s chairman of selectors, had insisted that it was only a stop-gap measure.
Paine’s form with the bat has been poor. In the five matches against England, he averaged 7.20 with the bat, with a top score of 15. His aggregate of 36 runs is the lowest ever returns by an Australian ODI skipper in a five-match series.
“It’s been difficult, you play cricket to do well and this series I haven’t done that,” Paine told Cricket Australia’s website at Old Trafford in the aftermath of a one-wicket defeat in the fifth ODI on Sunday (June 24).
“I haven’t played anywhere near as well as I would have liked to. That happens and it’s certainly not through a lack of effort. I am trying my guts out and working really hard, I have just had one of those series. I started off poorly and couldn’t get it back on track.”
Alex Carey, the young South Australian wicketkeeper, had a better outing in England, playing the last two one-dayers and scoring a gritty 44 in the final ODI. Already appointed vice-captain of the Twenty20 International side to facie England on June 27, he also looks set to take Paine’s place in the ODI line-up.
“I haven’t thought about, it to be honest,” Paine, 33, conceded. “All I know is I was coming here to do this series and I’ve said a few times before when you are my age, it’s a bit foolish to look ahead.
“Certainly I am really looking forward to captaining the Test team and continuing how I have been playing in that format. But where I go with the rest of my cricket is something we will discuss in the coming weeks.”
Australia’s next ODI assignment is only in November at home, against South Africa.