Tim Paine resigns as Australia Test captain after historical sexting scandal

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One month before the Ashes, Australia captain Tim Paine has resigned from his post after a historical sexting scandal from 2017 came to the fore. A report from News Corp says that Paine was investigated and cleared in 2018 over these alleged text messages, including images, to a female co-worker.

Though a private investigation had cleared Paine at the time of any code of conduct breaches, he chose to resign on Friday after the matter became public.

“It’s an incredibly difficult decision but the right one for me, my family and cricket,” Paine said.

“As a background on my decision, nearly four years ago, I was involved in a text exchange with a then colleague.

“At the time, the exchange was the subject of a thorough CA integrity unit investigation, throughout which I fully participated in and openly participated in.”

“Although exonerated I deeply regretted this incident at the time and still do today. I spoke to my wife and family at the time and am enormously grateful for their forgiveness and support.

“We thought this incident was behind us and I could focus entirely on the team as I have done for the last three or four years.

“However, I recently became aware that this private text exchange was going to become public. On reflection, my actions in 2017 do not meet the standard of an Australian cricket captain or the wider community.

“I’m deeply sorry for the hurt and pain that I have caused to my wife, my family and to the other party. I’m sorry for any damage that this does to the reputation of our sport.

“I believe that it is the right decision for me to stand down as captain effective immediately. I do not want this to become an unwelcome disruption to the team ahead of what is a huge Ashes series.”

With the Ashes closing in, vice-captain Pat Cummins might be promoted as captain , hence becoming the first fast bowler to captain the Australia Test side in 65 years.

Cricket Australia revealed that Paine will continue as a player with the former captain stating he is looking forward to the Ashes series.

“Despite the mistake he made, Tim has been an exceptional leader since his appointment and the Board thanks him for his distinguished service.

“Tim will continue to be available for selection in the Test team through the Ashes summer.”

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