Australia’s Test captain Tim Paine recalled the infamous ‘babysitting sledge’ with Team India wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant which dominated the headlines everywhere during India’s historic tour of Australia last year. Paine shed more light on his famous stump-mic banter during a Big Bash League (BBL) match on Monday.
Both Paine and Pant were involved in an on-field duel and tried their best to get under each other’s skin whenever they were doing the wicketkeeping duties in the hard-fought Test series.
Among Paine’s many jibes at his younger colleague was the one in which he asked if Pant could babysit for him and his wife after the series is done.
This was followed by Paine’s wife (Bonnie) posting a pic on her Instagram handle with Pant in which the latter were holding couple’s kids. Bonnie took to Instagram to share a photo Pant with her kids and captioned it: “Best babysitter”
The image went viral and was also shared by ICC’s official Twitter handle. ICC captioned the image: “You babysit? I’ll take the wife to the movies one night, you’ll look after the kids?”
Paine said while doing commentary for a BBL match that they had decided to get into Pant due to the latter’s tendency to play loose shots. He also added that they want to try every tactic to unsettle the young batsman as his Australian teammates were just bored.
“Geez we were bored, (we) could not get a wicket,'” he said. “Well Ricky (Ponting) knows him quite well – one, he’s very, very good, but two, we found out early in that series that sledging him was a waste of time.” Ponting is Pant’s coach at Indian Premier League franchise Delhi Capitals.
“It just didn’t bother him, but what we found was that you could get a real lapse of concentration out of him so we went a bit that way.
“So I just tried to put him off and talk rubbish to try and get him involved because he was likely to play a poor shot at time. But he’s a seriously talented player,” he said.
About his wife’s post going viral, Paine said, “I don’t think she was watching. Then I think she had got a bit of it through her Instagram and then she put up that photo on and as it happens, and as it’s happened, she had a million new Indian followers the next day so she panicked a little bit that it was on the news.”
Pant ended the Australia tour with a brilliant knock of unbeaten 159 in the fourth and final Test in Sydney. India completed their maiden 2-1 win in Down Under in the 2018-19 season.