England have registered a stunning victory in the third Ashes Test on the back of a stunning unbeaten 135 from Ben Stokes for the last wicket. Australia were on the verge of the win but Stokes’ brilliance snatched the game away from the Aussies. Before the fourth Ashes Test at Headingley, Australia captain Tim Paine said thoughts of how to stop Ben Stokes keep him awake at night as well.
However, Paine had to face criticisms as well for his leading style in the third Test. He took a wrong DRS in the last game and because of not having any review left, they failed to take a review on an original dismissal of Ben Stokes off Nathan Lyon. However, that would have changed the result of the game.
“Nah, I haven’t lost a hell of a lot of sleep thinking about my captaincy. But I have lost a bit of sleep thinking how we’re going to get him out, that’s for sure,” he said. “He’s a class player, and he’s really confident at the moment. He’s going well. Like I said, we’ve got some plans for him – but we’ve just got to execute them a bit better.”
Paine shared that spinner Nathan Lyon has troubled Ben Stokes many times and expected to do so in the next Test as well.
“I think Nathan has actually bowled really well to him. He’s created a number of chances each time he’s bowled to him. But the other side of it is we hold our chances when Nathan is bowling to him. If we can do that, I think he can open the game up for us through that middle order. The last two Tests in particular, we’ve let Nathan down a bit with our fielding,” he expressed.
However, the captain has accepted the fault.
“We made some mistakes, it happens. We have addressed it as a team and spoken about it honestly. I was certainly one of those people who made mistakes. I would have done some things differently with my field placings,” he said.
“There were times, looking back at it, where it was obvious I should have had the field up and allowed Ben to hit a couple of boundaries so we had more balls at the tailender (Jack Leach). That’s the main thing I would have done differently. It happens in cricket and we have moved on, learnt from it, and we are ready for another great Test match,” he concluded.