• Paine looks beyond series defeat to India

    Captain Tim Paine’s attention promptly turned to the challenging Test series against Sri Lanka and England later this year, after Monday’s defeat at the hands of India.

    The Indians completed a two-one series victory at the Sydney Cricket Ground, with the fourth and final Test reduced to a draw by wet weather.

    ‘We know there are guys outside of this group who want to come in. No illusions, we need to keep working hard. Cricket’s a funny game and it can turn very quickly. We’ll have an eye on the series against Sri Lanka,’ said Paine.

    ‘We have Tests against Sri Lanka and then the Ashes, so this series was important.’

    Australia won the second Test after conceding the first – and later lost the third, too. Batsman Cheteshwar Pujara and seamer Jasprit Bumrah were the tourists’ leading run-scorer and wicket-taker respectively.

    ‘We have to tip our hat to India. We know how tough it is to win in India, so congrats to Virat Kohli and his team, because it’s a huge achievement. They deserve to win the series,’ added Paine.

    ‘We are disappointed, definitely over the last two Tests. We had our chances in Adelaide. In Perth I thought we played some good cricket, but in Melbourne and Sydney we’ve been outplayed.’

    The World Cup is also this year, but Paine might not feature. He was named ODI captain in the absence of the banned Steven Smith last year, but was eventually succeeded by new skipper Aaron Finch.

    ‘The next Test series is some six to seven months away. It’ll give me some time to prepare. I would like to play white-ball cricket, but Test cricket is my priority, and it will always be so,’ concluded Paine.

    Photo: Getty

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