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Monday
September 2019
12:08 PM IST
News Headlines
Sourabh wins Vietnam Open Super 100 title        England close in on Ashes-levelling win after Broad double        Air India posts Rs 4,600 cr operating loss in 2018-19; aims operating profit this fiscal        SBI to move RBI to offer fixed-floating rate home-loans: Chairman        Hong Kong returns to violence with tear gas and Molotovs        36 people missing after boat sinks in Congo river: DRC police        Underfire PM calls up Hulk, claims 'huge' Brexit progress        Dearth of quality people in north India: Labour minister on unemployment        Will implement NRC in Haryana, says Khattar        One nation-one language will never be a reality: Jairam Ramesh        21 Indians killed in 2,050 ceasefire violations by Pak this year: MEA        We need to take advantage of India's inexperienced pace attack: Klusener        India's contrasting training camps at World Championships        Inflation under control, clear signs of revival in factory output: FM        China to lift punitive tariffs on US soybeans, pork        Former PM Cameron 'sorry' for Brexit divisions        Pakistani cleric Tahirul Qadri quits politics, resigns from party        Afghan government says elections first, peace deal after        My govt committed to the welfare of peasants & also to promote industry: Mamata        Amend Constitution to ensure use of Indian languages in SC, high courts: Paswan        
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Sports News
'Accidental' Australia captain Paine on verge of Ashes landmark
 
London: Greg Chappell could not do it, while Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke, who had both had two attempts each, were unable to manage it either.

But if his side avoid defeat in the fifth Test against England at The Oval starting Thursday, Tim Paine will join the list of Australia captains who have led the team to an Ashes series win in England. It is a feat no Australia captain has achieved since Steve Waugh oversaw a 4-1 success 18 years ago.

Waugh, like Chappell, Ponting and Clarke, is one of Australia's greatest cricketers. No one, least of all wicketkeeper Paine himself, would suggest he is in that class and the way in which he inherited the captaincy was highly unusual.

Traditionally, Australia have picked their best 11 players first and then opted for one of them as captain, while in England, where there has long been an emphasis on 'leadership qualities', the tendency has been to select the skipper first and then find 10 others to join him.

Paine's case was different. Following the ball-tampering scandal in Cape Town in March 2018 that saw Steve Smith stripped of the captaincy and David Warner removed from the post of vice-captain -- with both batsmen subsequently given 12-month bans by Cricket Australia -- officials needed someone uncontaminated by the incident to lead the team and turned to Paine the morning after 'Sandpapergate'.

Paine, who had made his Australia debut in a Test against Pakistan at Lord's in 2010, had been on the brink of retiring from cricket in 2017 and taking up a job with an equipment manufacturer instead.

But having forced his way back into the side, the Tasmanian found himself thrust into the captaincy barely a year later. Ever since becoming skipper, Paine has face accusations that he is both an "accidental" skipper and not worth his place in the side.

But having shown dignity after a dramatic one-wicket loss in the third Test at Headingley, Paine had the satisfaction of leading the team to an 185-run win at Old Trafford on Sunday that ensured they retained the Ashes at 2-1 up with just one to play. - 'Scary Smith' -

Much of the credit will go to Smith, who has so far scored 671 runs at 134.20 with three hundreds, including 211 at Old Trafford, in his first series since his ban.

"He is just a genius and I never had any doubt he would come back and be the player he was," said Paine, who made his Test debut in the same match as Smith.

"The scary thing is he's getting better. I don't know where it is going to stop but we are enjoying being on the ride, that is for sure."

Just as Smith is the world's top-ranked Test batsman, Australia spearhead Pat Cummins is at the summit of the corresponding bowling rankings.

Most captains are only as good as their players, but Paine contributed to victory in Manchester by ending a run of low scores with a valuable first-innings 58.

"In terms of what we've been able to achieve as a group is pretty satisfying from where we've come from in the last 18 months," said Paine.

"Great character, shows the great people we have got and shows we've also got some bloody good cricketers in our team.

"Also from where we've come from, even from last week (the defeat at Headingley).

That was a loss that would break a lot of teams but we weren't." As for personal satisfaction, the 34-year-old Paine added: "My dream was to come here and win an Ashes. I certainly didn't want to be the captain winning the Ashes.

"I am just happy to be a part of it. I could have been working at Kookaburra so this isn't bad.


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England close in on Ashes-levelling win after Broad double
We need to take advantage of India's inexperienced pace attack: Klusener
India's contrasting training camps at World Championships
Pant phenomenal talent but gets too ahead of himself: Klusener
Always wanted to make a mark in Test cricket: Bumrah
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Root wants to stay on as England captain after Ashes blow
Afghanistan set Bangladesh daunting target
Foreign coach's changes helped improve my game: Sindhu
Rashid's five wickets put Afghanistan on top
Medvedev glad to prove doubters wrong at US Open
Smith underlines greatness with Old Trafford double century
I treat every Test as my last, says Hanuma Vihari
Life after Mithali: 15-year-old Shafali comes into Indian women's T20 squad
KERALA NEWS
Tipplers guzzle Rs 487 crore worth liqour during onam
 Thiruvananthapuram: Tipplers in Kerala guzzled liqour worth a record Rs 487 crore sold through state  
candidate selection for Pala by-election is an internal matter of KC(M): Chandy
Kevin Murder Case: Double life sentence for all 10 convicts
Malayalam actor, film crew stranded in Himachal village
INTERNATIONAL NEWS
Hong Kong returns to violence with tear gas and Molotovs
 Hong Kong: Hong Kong riot police fired tear gas and water cannons at hardcore pro-democracy proteste
36 people missing after boat sinks in Congo river: DRC police
Underfire PM calls up Hulk, claims 'huge' Brexit progress
Former PM Cameron 'sorry' for Brexit divisions
NATIONAL NEWS
Dearth of quality people in north India: Labour minister on unemployment
 Lucknow: Union labour minister Santosh Kumar Gangwar has said there was no dearth of employment oppo
Will implement NRC in Haryana, says Khattar
One nation-one language will never be a reality: Jairam Ramesh
My govt committed to the welfare of peasants & also to promote industry: Mamata
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