He’s back! Ex-Aussie skipper Tim Paine is secretly training at his old cricket club just nine months after notorious sexting scandal brought his star career to a grinding halt
- Tim Paine will return to top-level cricket for Tasmania despite sexting scandal
- The former Aussie captain was forced to resign in disgrace last year
Former Australian skipper Tim Paine is officially returning the top level of cricket in Australia – and at the same organization where he was embroiled in a sexting scandal that ruined his international career.
The married 37-year-old stood down from the national captaincy in disgrace in November last year after details emerged of the explicit texts, including a picture of his genitals, with a female co-worker.
Cricket Tasmania CEO Dom Baker confirmed Paine was back training with the state squad ahead of the 2022-23 first class season.
‘All of Tasmania and I think most of Australia wants to see him finish his career on his own terms,’ Baker told News Corp.
Tim Paine with wife Bonnie Paine. The pair are still together despite Tim’s sexting scandal with a former Cricket Tasmania co-worker going public late last year
Renee Ferguson, a former Cricket Tasmania employee, was embroiled in the sexting scandal with Tim Paine
It comes as Renee Ferguson, the former Cricket Tasmania employee who was embroiled in the sexting saga with Paine, has fronted court.
Ferguson left her job in December 2017 after being accused of stealing $5600 in cash as well as in memberships.
She has been ordered to stand trial on stealing charges levelled by her former employer, and intends to plead not guilty.
Tim Paine tearfully announces his resignation as Australia’s cricket captain after details of the sexting scandal were revealed
Baker said Paine was a much-loved member of the organisation, and after winning two Sheffield Shield titles, deserved to be ‘welcomed back into the fold’.
‘It was just great to see him come into my office and request permission to train. He started here as just a 16-year-old all those years ago and has been a part of our cricket ever since,’ he said.
‘He is training as an uncontracted player to get fit for club cricket, but if he proves to be anywhere near his best expect to see him playing state cricket again.’
Tim Paine stood down as National skipper in November last year – but he is returning to Australia’s top-level with home state Tasmania this season
The sexting scandal, which occurred in 2017, contains many messages and pictures to vulgar to report between Ferguson and Paine.
In one, the married Paine allegedly wrote: ‘Will you want to taste my d**?? F**k me, I’m seriously h***.’
It led to him resigning from the Aussie captaincy, before he took a break from the sport altogether as the nation reeled from the fall-out.
Tim and Bonnie Paine grace the red carpet at the Cricket Australia awards in 2020
Paine has been married to long-term partner Bonnie since 2016, and the pair have two infant children: Milla and Charlie.
The pair are still together, with Bonnie standing by her husband’s side as the young family look towards returning to normality.
Tasmania kick off their 2022-23 season with a one-day match against South Australia on September 28.