Tim Paine's wife sends message to new Test captain Pat Cummins

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·Sports Reporter
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Bonnie Paine posted a message of encouragement for newly installed Test captain Pat Cummins on her Instagram.
Bonnie Paine, wife of former Test captain Tim, had some words of encouragement on Instagram for successor, Pat Cummins. Pictures: Instagram/Getty Images

Pat Cummins' promotion to captain of the Australian Test team may not have come under the circumstances he'd envisioned, but the 28-year-old has earned a crucial seal of approval.

Cummins was elevated to the captaincy after Tim Paine resigned and announced he would step away from all levels of cricket late last week.

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Paine announced he would step down after details from a sex scandal investigation dating back to 2017 were made public.

His departure paved the way for Cummins to become Australia's first bowler since Richie Benaud in 1963 to captain the side.

In a gesture of support for the new skipper. Paine's wife Bonnie took to Instagram to wish Cummins well in the role shortly after it was announced on Friday afternoon.

Re-posting the announcement to her story, Bonnie said Cummins had the support of herself and Tim as the team prepares to host the Ashes.

“@patcummins30 two of your biggest supporters over here”, she wrote, alongside a heart emoji.

Behind the scenes, Paine's decision to step down was ultimate made from a desire not to become a distraction throughout the highly anticipated Test series.

Cummins said the move was a testament to Paine's leadership.

Bonnie Paine's message of support on Instagram for Test captain Pat Cummins.
Bonnie Paine posted a message of support for Pat Cummins after he was promoted to Test captain after Tim Paine stepped down. Picture: Instagram

"When I spoke to Tim this morning, he wanted to make it really clear that part of his decision of taking a break was he didn't want this to be a distraction," Cummins said.

"Another tick for his leadership.

"I've been chatting to Tim the whole week.

"We really feel for Tim and his family. He's just a really loved, well-respected leader.

"He's going through a tough time."

Concerns for Tim Paine and family amid sexting scandal

Playing cricket is currently the least of Paine's concerns, with manager James Henderson tweeting "we are extremely concerned for his and (wife) Bonnie's well-being".

The veteran underwent neck surgery in September but, as of Thursday, was slated to link up with Test teammates for an intra-squad clash beginning in Brisbane on Wednesday.

Paine was set to bat at first drop in Tasmania's one-dayer on Friday, giving him a chance to play five consecutive days of cricket after a low-key return via the state's second XI.

Now, nobody knows when Paine's next game might be as the fallout continues to him sending an explicit image and lewd messages to a Cricket Tasmania (CT) staffer in 2017.

"We'll give him as much time as needed. We'd absolutely welcome him back ... we hope we see him back in the team soon and just wish him all the best," Cummins said.

Tim Paine has relinquished the Test captaincy after details of a 2017 sexting scandal came to light.
Tim Paine has announced he will step away from all forms of cricket after details of a 2017 sexting scandal emerged over the past week. (Photo by PATRICK HAMILTON/AFP via Getty Images)

Cricket Australia chief executive Nick Hockley and players' union counterpart Todd Greenberg offered similar sentiments.

"We recognise that this is an incredibly difficult time for Tim and his family and are committed to supporting them," Hockley said.

Greenberg and chair Greg Dyer released a joint statement expressing sadness over the latest development in the saga, noting "family and health are more important than any game of cricket".

"It takes genuine courage to both recognise the need for help and ask for it. Tim now needs some time and space," they wrote.

Smith, who has spoken at length about his own struggles in the aftermath of the Cape Town cheating scandal, urged Paine to "take care of himself and be really kind to himself".

"My thoughts are with him and his family," Smith said.

CT, who fumed on Tuesday about CA's "appalling" treatment of their favourite son, also vowed to support Paine and his family.

With AAP

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