Justin Langer on Thursday praised skipper Tim Paine for his “incredible leadership” qualities ahead of the 2nd Boxing Day Test against India.
Tim Paine had played a fighting knock for Australia on the second day of the pink-ball Test and even won Man of the Match for his valiant gritty knock of unbeaten 73 off 99 balls which reduced the 1st innings deficit.
Justin Langer: Tim Paine Has Incredible Leadership Abilities
The hosts Australia were left reeling at 111-7 with Tim Paine and the tail-enders Pat Cummins, Nathan Lyon and Josh Hazlewood at the crease but the final three wickets managed to add 80 more runs and the skipper played an unbeaten knock of 73 runs himself to help take Australia closer to the visitors’ first innings total but eventually Australia fell 53 runs short of India’s 1st innings total before India registered lowest ever Test score in 2nd innings.
Justin Langer said he has enormous faith in current skipper Tim Paine and even explained why the skipper has become the second-best wicket-keeper for Australia after legendary cricketer Adam Gilchrist in the longest format of the game.
“You think about Adam Gilchrist who transformed the game in this sense and he was an all-time great player. I have got enormous faith in Tim Paine every part of his game whether it is wicket-keeping, batting or captaincy,” said Langer in a virtual press-conference on Thursday.
“I have said publicly and privately he is such an important player because he is lead wicket-keeper. His leadership is incredible and we saw how well he batted in the first innings under pressure in Adelaide, probably changed the game with the run out of Virat Kohli. He is a great player and a great leader and I literally loved having him in our team,” he explained.
Tim Paine has captained Australia in 20 Tests and Australia have won 11 out of them. He even took 5 catches in India’s 2nd innings and was instrumental in running out of Virat Kohli, who was set on 74 and looking on course to play s big innings. India were then 188/3 then and looking poised for a big total.
Justin Langer Is Hopeful Of David Warner’s Availability For 3rd Test
Justin Langer is also hopeful that star opening batsman David Warner could be available for the third Test against India in Sydney.
The third Test between the two sides will be played from January 7 at the Sydney Cricket Ground and Justin Langer has kept his “fingers crossed” over David Warner’s availability.
“I am very hopeful, he batted really well in the nets yesterday. He is moving well and as enthusiastic as ever. He has got so much energy and passion for the game so. And for the last week or so he is doing everything possible to get back onto the ground,” said Langer while replying to a query from ANI.
“Fingers crossed he has slight trouble when he starts running at full speed. When he gets back that confidence off course he will be back in the team. We are monitoring him regularly and just fingers crossed,” Justin Langer added.
Both India and Australia are set to take on each other in the Boxing Day Test, beginning Saturday. Australia will field an unchanged XI while India may make as many as 5 changes with Shubman Gill and Mohammed Siraj expected to debut while there may be the return of KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant and Ravindra Jadeja.