Sledging will be toned down under new Test captain Tim Paine, who says the much-maligned culture of the Australian cricket team needs just a few tweaks to regain the public’s trust.
Paine, thrust into the captaincy after the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa, maintains the team’s culture is not as bad as some had claimed in the fallout.
Former Test opener Rick McCosker has been appointed by Cricket Australia to head a panel to review that culture.
But Paine does not believe major changes are needed.
“Obviously we’ve had this incident which has brought everything to a head,” Paine said in Hobart on Thursday.
“But during the Ashes there wasn’t a lot said about our culture.
“Looking back it’s just a few little things that we can tweak and do a little bit better as a team.
“If we do that I think the Australia public will jump back on board pretty quickly.”
Paine, who implemented a pre-game handshake between teams when he took over for the final South African Test, promised sledging would be cut down.
“In the last couple of years, at times as a team, we’ve probably been a touch too emotional and got carried away,” the 33-year-old said.
“There’s always a time and a place to talk to your opposition.
“But what’s said and how it’s said will be very different going forward.”
Smith already looking for changes before departure
Paine revealed former captain Steve Smith, who is serving a one-year ban along with vice-captain David Warner and opening batsman Cameron Bancroft (nine months), will still have a say about the direction of the side.
“He (Smith) is someone that I’ll certainly be speaking to quite closely about how we go about it and keeping him in the loop,” Paine said.
“We started to have these discussions a few months ago and Steve was keen for the team to start playing a different style.
“And for me, it’s about carrying that on.”
A wide-ranging Cricket Australia (CA) board meeting on Friday is expected to discuss the process of appointing a head coach to replace Darren Lehmann after his resignation near the end of the disastrous tour.
Western Australian and Perth Scorchers coach Justin Langer is considered the heavy favourite for the job, with the former Test opener getting Paine’s backing.
“We’ve got a number of people who can step up and do the role,” he said.
“Justin’s one of those guys who I know would be absolutely brilliant.”
It’s understood an assistant coach could be appointed in an interim head role before Australia’s limited-overs tour of England in June if CA can’t settle on an outstanding candidate.
The next ODI skipper after Smith’s sacking will also be discussed at the board meeting.
Paine told media he’d only been appointed Test captain at this stage.