Australia news Sheffield Shield – Paine involved in Tasmania coaching set-up
Former Test captain Tim Paine has been helping to coach the Tasmanian Tigers but hasn’t turned his mind to a playing comeback just yet.
Cricket Australia has copped criticism for their handling of the saga, including from Cricketers Association chief Todd Greenberg who says players had felt let down by the governing body.
Interim Tasmania Tigers coach Ali De Winter revealed on Tuesday that Paine had been helping out in a coaching role.
“He’s been great. He stepped into the coaching breach for us,” De Winter told reporters ahead of the team’s Sheffield Shield match against NSW on Friday.
“Hasn’t done any training. But it’s been great to have him around the group. It’s been a nice little distraction for him, I guess, to spend some time with us. He’s been great with our young players.
“Where he stands with his playing of cricket, I don’t think he’s thought that far ahead yet.
“I think he’s just enjoying the re-entry to our group and focusing on family life.”
Paine didn’t attend the historic fifth men’s Ashes Test in his home town last month, instead reportedly opting to travel with family.
Paine hasn’t played since turning out in a second XI fixture for Tasmania in late November, when he scored one and seven and took eight catches for the match.
De Winter said Paine had been keeping physically fit but wasn’t batting or wicketkeeping.
When asked whether Paine was pondering a return in grade cricket, De Winter said nothing had been mentioned.
“I don’t believe that is front of mind for him now, not this season anyway,” he added.
CA was made aware of the texting incident in 2018 but backed Paine to continue playing and captaining Australia at that juncture, desperate to restore the team’s image after the Cape Town cheating crisis.
Paine’s coaching helps fill a leadership void at Cricket Tasmania after Adam Griffith stepped down as coaching director and Hobart Hurricanes head coach.