Tim Paine lets fly at England’s hypocrisy

Tim Paine says Ben Stokes' recent meltdown at being labelled 'Ed Sheeran' in South Africa is about to look like crying over spilt milk now that Australia is back in town.

Having witnessed the systematic abuse of David Warner and Steve Smith from English crowds during the Ashes, the return of Australia to 'The Bull Ring' in Johannesburg for another torrid reception has prompted Paine to express his frustration at the hypocrisy of Stokes and England.

Lookalike sledges will be the least of Warner and Smith's concerns early Saturday (AEDT) as the duo prepares to face the music for the first time since sandpapergate in front of cricket's notoriously ruthless South African fans.

Watch the QANTAS Tour of South Africa LIVE & On-Demand with no ad-breaks during play on Kayo. New to Kayo? Get your 14-day free trial & start streaming instantly >

Tim Paine says his Australian players are going to cop far worse than England in South Africa. Picture: AAP Image/James Gourley
Tim Paine says his Australian players are going to cop far worse than England in South Africa. Picture: AAP Image/James Gourley

Just last month, the intimidating colosseum that is The Wanderers in Johannesburg got the better of England enforcer Stokes, who threatened to take a fan 'outside' who had the gall to liken him to Ed Sheeran.

According to Paine, the Stokes dummy spit showed England can dish it out, but can't take it - as he predicted Warner and Smith to be well prepared to weather abuse far worse than a barb about a red-headed British pop star.

"Worse than being called Ed Sheeran? I think they might have," Paine told News Corp Cricket of what Warner and Smith copped in the UK and will be exposed to again in South Africa.

 

Ben Stokes apologised after abusing a fan.
Ben Stokes apologised after abusing a fan.

 

"Absolutely, all the time. And it wasn't just Steve and Dave, it was everyone.

"… This is one of the things that's always irked me, particularly with the English. You cannot react to the crowd (and play the victim, like Stokes in Johannesburg), but then always encourage the Barmy Army to do exactly the same, and worse - abuse players.

"Like we had in Edgbaston … they clap them at the end of the days' play and make a big point of thanking them, as like the 12th man, or 13th player.

"Then a little thing like that (Stokes being called Sheeran), they react and all of a sudden, 'we're getting abused from the crowd, we're getting this, we're getting that.'

"That's international cricket, just get on with it. It frustrates me, it really does."

 

Tim Paine with his teammates David Warner and Steve Smith who may be targeted by fans on their return to South Africa. Picture. Phil Hillyard
Tim Paine with his teammates David Warner and Steve Smith who may be targeted by fans on their return to South Africa. Picture. Phil Hillyard

 

Paine said Stokes' indiscretion, where the England all-rounder also called the fan a "four-eyed f..." during a Test against South Africa last month, was a timely reminder to an Australian team to keep their guard up at all times, as they did so successfully during the Ashes.

"We made a bit of a thing as a group that we weren't going to react to it, we were going to rise above it. We know now that's what we're going to cop because of what happened in South Africa and that's fine," said Paine.

"The worst thing you can do is react to it and as we saw in South Africa recently, it just makes the story bigger and puts more heat into something that had he (Stokes) kept walking, then no one would have even known about. It's been a big focus of ours, is being able to bat it off and get on with it.

"I felt the way both Steve and Dave handled themselves and handled what was thrown at them off the field (in England), I thought they were both absolutely exceptional and I think they will be again in South Africa.

"Obviously there's going to be times when it's going to be difficult for them, but that's where it's going to be important for their teammates and the staff to get around them and help them through it - and I'm sure they will."


Return of ‘experienced’ senior players to boost Hawks

Premium Content Return of ‘experienced’ senior players to boost Hawks

Boost in confidence to help Gatton Hawks in their quest for a round-two victory...

Flash flooding possible in lead up to weekend

Premium Content Flash flooding possible in lead up to weekend

BOM has warned there is a chance of severe storms in the Lockyer and Somerset.

REVEALED: Region's best doctor as voted by you

Premium Content REVEALED: Region's best doctor as voted by you

We asked who the best doctors are in the region, you voted