Former Australian cricket captain Tim Paine set to return for Tasmania after sexting scandal


Former Aussie skipper Tim Paine set to return to the field for Tasmania despite the fall-out over sexting scandal with one of his colleagues

  • One-time Australian test captain Tim Paine will play for Tasmania this Thursday
  • Will end 11-month hiatus from first class cricket, some feared Paine would retire 
  • Stood down as Australian skipper last November following a sexting scandal

Disgraced Australian test captain Tim Paine will make his long awaited return to first class cricket with Tasmania in the Sheffield Shield on Thursday.

Paine, 37, has been named in a 13-man squad to take on Queensland at Allan Border Field in Albion.

After stepping down as Australian skipper last November following a sexting scandal with one-time Cricket Tasmania employee Renee Ferguson, some feared the wicketkeeper would be lost to the sport for good.

There were also concerns surrounding Paine’s mental health after the saga – which unfolded privately in 2017 – went public.

The matter was investigated by Cricket Australia the following year after Ferguson complained – but Paine was cleared of misconduct at the time.

Former Australian test captain Tim Paine will make his first class cricket return for Tasmania in the Sheffield Shield on Thursday

Paine stood down as Australian skipper last November following a sexting scandal with one-time Cricket Tasmania employee Renee Ferguson (pictured) became public knowledge

Paine stood down as Australian skipper last November following a sexting scandal with one-time Cricket Tasmania employee Renee Ferguson (pictured) became public knowledge

Before his fall from grace, Paine had led the Aussie team admirably since the Sandpapergate ball-tampering scandal in South Africa back in 2018.

Following his shock appointment, Paine was painted as the saviour of Australian cricket after captain Steve Smith and vice-captain David Warner were both suspended for 12 months for bringing the sport into disrepute.

Opening batsman Cameron Bancroft served a nine month ban.

Eyeing off an emotional return following a 11-month hiatus, Paine, a married father of two, has kept his eye in recently by turning out for University in Tasmanian club cricket. 

‘He’s been training with us most sessions the last five or six weeks,’ Tasmania head coach Justin Vaughan said.

‘Physically he’s going well, emotionally going well. I’m sure everyone would agree that we trust his wicketkeeping skill set and his leadership skill set.’

The matter was investigated by Cricket Australia the following year after Ferguson complained - but Paine (pictured with wife Bonnie) was cleared of misconduct

The matter was investigated by Cricket Australia the following year after Ferguson complained – but Paine (pictured with wife Bonnie) was cleared of misconduct

The father of two, 37, hasn't played first class cricket in 11 months, with his mental health his priority

The father of two, 37, hasn’t played first class cricket in 11 months, with his mental health his priority

Paine is said to be in ‘exceptional physical shape’ and may also turn out in the Big Bash this summer, with the Hobart Hurricanes the early favourites for his signature.

His world came crashing down last year after details emerged of the explicit texts, including a picture of his genitals, with Ferguson.

In one exchange, Paine allegedly wrote: ‘Will you want to taste my d**?? F**k me, I’m seriously h***.’

Another text read ‘need to ease the tension…finish me off with those lips then.’ 

In August, Ferguson fronted Hobart Magistrates Court over stealing allegations.

Police allege Ferguson stole $5600 from Cricket Tasmania, where she worked from 2015 to 2017.

Ms Ferguson denied the charges, and is suing Cricket Tasmania over allegations she was subjected to sexual harassment by multiple employees, including Paine.

Both matters are ongoing. 

Tim Paine’s rise and dramatic fall in sexting scandal

Australian captain Tim Paine walks to change ends during a cricket test against India at the Sydney Cricket Ground, in Sydney, Australia on Jan. 9, 2021

Australian captain Tim Paine walks to change ends during a cricket test against India at the Sydney Cricket Ground, in Sydney, Australia on Jan. 9, 2021

2010: Tim Paine makes his Test debut against Pakistan, replacing injured Brad Haddin, but is dumped upon the incumbent’s return

April 2016: Paine marries Bonnie Maggs

November 17, 2017: Granted shock recall for Ashes series

November 22-23, 2017: Paine sends lewd messages to a female coworker on the eve and morning of the first Ashes Test in Brisbane. The pair had exchanged texts throughout the year

January 2018: Selected for squad to tour South Africa

March 25, 2018: Appointed interim captain after Steve Smith and David Warner stood down over ‘sandpapergate’ ball tampering scandal

March 28, 2018: Paine is appointed captain for the 4th Test of the series, becoming the 46th captain of the Australian side

April 2018: Awarded a national contract by Cricket Australia 

June 2018: Cricket Australia and Cricket Tasmania become aware of the messages and launch an investigation, following a complaint from the woman. Paine claims he was exonerated during the investigation. His wife Bonnie was aware of the messages but chose to stick by him

2018 – 2021: Paine continues as Test captain, retaining the Ashes in England in 2019

November 19, 2021: Paine steps down as full details of the explicit messages surface

 

 

 

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