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Paine scandal will be a distraction during Ashes: Ponting


Former Australia skipper Ricky Ponting said Tim Paine’s resignation from the captaincy due to a ‘sexting’ scandal will “inevitably” be a distraction during the five-Test Ashes series against England.

Paine stood down from the role last Friday after media revelations he had been investigated, and cleared over sexually explicit text messages sent to a female former colleague at Cricket Tasmania in 2017.

“I think it inevitably will (be a distraction). He’s made a huge call for himself, for Australian cricket and for the betterment of the Australian cricket team. But it’s not going to go away,” Ponting toldย cricket.com.au.

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“As much as we would all love to see it go away and there comes a point where it’s never talked about, it’s inevitable that it’s going to be there.

“Unfortunately for Tim, he’s going to get asked about it everywhere he goes … It will blow over, and hopefully it passes in enough time to have some really good clear headspace going into Brisbane (for the first test).”

The Ashes begins on Dec. 8 at the Gabba.

Ponting said Alex Carey could replace Paine as wicketkeeper if the 36-year-old is dropped but backed Josh Inglis, who has yet to make his international debut, to be the long-term successor behind the stumps.

“I’m on record saying I love Inglis — I think he’s going to be a really good cricketer for Australia for a long time in whatever format they pick him in first, whether it’s T20s, one-dayers or test cricket,” added Ponting.

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