Tim Paine's revelation about Mitchell Johnson and David Warner after 'personal' swipe

Two former Australian cricket captains have weighed in on the extraordinary comments from the fast bowling great.

Mitchell Johnson alongside Tim Paine and David Warner.
Mitchell Johnson dragged Tim Paine and David Warner's personal lives into an extraordinary swipe. Image: Getty

Tim Paine has revealed he believes there is bad blood between Mitchell Johnson and David Warner, however Michael Clarke says he never saw it during his time as Australian cricket captain. Johnson took an extraordinary swipe at Warner and the handling of his farewell from Test cricket last weekend, suggesting the veteran opener doesn't deserve to dictate to selectors when he retires.

Warner is planning to step away form red-ball cricket after the third Test against Pakistan at the SCG this summer. In an article for the West Australian, Johnson took exception to Warner's plans and said he "still never really owned the ball-tampering scandal" of 2018.

“Does this really warrant a swan song, a last hurrah against Pakistan that was forecast a year in advance as if he was bigger than the game and the Australian cricket team,” Johnson wrote. "It’s been five years and Warner has still never really owned the ball-tampering scandal. Now the way he is going out is underpinned by more of the same arrogance and disrespect to our country.”

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Johnson also took a swipe at national selector George Bailey and said he was too close to the situation to be able to make an unbiased call on Warner. Johnson likened it to when Bailey withdrew himself from making any decisions on good mate Paine's future as Test captain when he was stood down amid a sexting scandal - a situation that greatly affected his wife and family.

“When then-captain Tim Paine’s career was ending over the sexting controversy, chairman of selectors George Bailey said he didn’t want to be part of deciding Paine’s fate because the pair were close friends,” Johnson wrote. “The handling of Warner in recent years, who played with Bailey in all three forms, raises the question of whether Bailey was simply too quickly out of playing and into the job and too close to some of the players."

Tim Paine responds to Mitchell Johnson's comments

Responding to the comments on Monday morning, Paine said he believes there is some ill-will between Johnson and Warner. The former Test captain suggested Johnson's swipe had been "ruined" by how personal he got after taking a shot at Warner's wife Candice earlier this year.

“I think if you read between the lines, him and Davey Warner clearly don’t get along,” Paine said. “So it’s a bit easier for him to fire a few shots at him. They’re just different people. I have nothing to shed on that. They’re just different. I’m only reading between the lines. Just reading that tells me that they probably don’t get along.

"But again some of his points about his (Warner’s) stats and his position in the team and him getting a little bit of extra time were probably ruined by the personal nature of it. And bringing sandpaper back into it. And saying David being a person who used his leadership role for power. I played with David and he certainly didn’t do that.

“I thought the article was pretty good. There were a lot of questions that people wanted to ask and it created a lot of interest and a lot of thought, even from someone like me. I thought he just went a bit too far on some things that it ruined it for me. The George stuff, I just found it a bit unnecessary.”

Paine said about Bailey: "I work with George and I think anyone who knows George would never question his integrity or his professionalism or his ability to do that job. I think he’s done an amazing job if you look at the success they’ve had as a team.”

Mitchell Johnson and David Warner, pictured here in action for Australia in 2014.
Mitchell Johnson and David Warner in action for Australia in 2014. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

Michael Clarke never saw any beef between teammates

Clarke, who captained Johnson and Warner, said he'd never seen any signs of beef between them. “In every sporting team not everybody gets on. Not everyone is best friends,” he said on Sky Sports radio.

“Dave is a strong character, Mitch is a strong character, (they) went hard at each other in the nets. I saw that but I couldn’t sit here and say they had beef against one another when we played.

"Maybe I’ve missed something here ... Mitch hasn’t played for years now so maybe there is beef, I don’t know. When you’re in a role like this ... if you have an opinion and it’s based on what’s best for the team, or your experience, then go with that. But it should never be personal. I try not to make it personal and if it comes across that way you try and apologise for that because you don’t want that.”

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