SA vs AUS 2018: Tim Paine Hails Australia’s Fighting Spirit
Despite Australia conceding a huge lead, skipper Tim Paine hailed the team’s fighting spirit in the ongoing fourth Test against South Africa.
Australia have their back against all after South Africa finished day three on a commanding 134 for three, extending their lead to 401.
With two days still left in the game, the game looks set to be going pretty much in the hosts’ favour. But ignoring all this, Paine lavished his team’s dodgy display.
Australia resumed day three’s proceedings on a precarious 110 for six. The onus was on Paine to reduce the deficit as much as possible and he found an able partner in Pat Cummins. The duo frustrated the hosts with a dogged 99-run partnership for the seventh wicket. As a result, Australia finished their innings on 221 after being reduced to 96 for five.
A loss looks like the most likely result for Australia, but the Paine-Cummins show had ensured they have some positives to derive from the game.
“We were very disappointed with yesterday, just purely on effort and our mode of dismissals we thought was pretty poor,” Paine said after the day’s play. “We spoke about that last night, but also about the opportunity you always get in cricket, there’s a second innings and another day. Dust ourselves off from yesterday, come back today and try to do as best we can. I thought we stuck out the day really well; now we’ve got to let today go and focus on tomorrow to try and do things better again. Keep on improving, that’s sort of where we’re at at the moment when you’ve got some of your best players not in the side, it’s just about people picking up the slack and trying to get better every day.
“I thought the discipline our bowlers showed; we didn’t get the wickets that we perhaps deserved. But I was really proud at the way they stuck at it and the same with our fielding group. I thought our fielding energy right through the innings was excellent. That’s what we’re about,” he added.
Paine led Australia’s fightback with a dodgy fifty after sustaining a hairline fracture on his right thumb during South Africa’s first innings. Paine is hopeful that he would not miss the remainder of the game.
“I haven’t spoken about it, all we know at the moment is some sort of break in it,” he noted. “It’s all in place which is good. Barring another hit in this Test it should be OK. It’s got a little crack in it. I’ve played through worse.”
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