Australia’s Test captain Tim Paine has revealed that he played with a broken thumb during the fifth Ashes Test, while pacer Peter Siddle battled a hip injury through the game.
“My thumb was broken towards the end of that Test but it is not displaced, so I should be right to get back into training early,” Paine told The Australian, days after his side retained the urn despite losing the final game. “There’s a bit of recovery to be done.”
Paine’s injury, though not a serious one, is an addition to the long list of blows he has suffered to his fingers and thumb throughout his career. After an injury in 2010, his right index finger had to undergo seven operations, and has a plate and eight nails holding it together.
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) September 16, 2019
Also playing through pain was Siddle, who has a long history of back issues. Siddle tweaked his hip on the opening day of the Test, but bowled through the discomfort, sending down a total of 30 overs.
“Peter Siddle tore a hip flexor bowling on the first morning,” Paine said. “He has copped a bit of criticism for not bowling as well as he we know he can, but the team knows just how heroic he was.
“A lot of other people wouldn’t have bowled again in the match, but he pushed on because he didn’t want to leave Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins to do extra work. He’s a warrior, Sidds, and we love him deeply for that.”
Paine, who took four catches, and scored 1 and 21 in Australia’s 135-run defeat, is expected to recover in time for the One-Day Cup in late September. However, he added that he won’t be part of the 2019-20 edition of the Big Bash League.
“I’m keen to see just how far we can take this team and I’ve decided to give up the BBL so I can concentrate on red-ball cricket and being in the best place to lead them,” he said. “Being captain is draining and I think I should take every chance to recharge my batteries. I’ll go back to the BBL when I’m finished, but for now my focus is on my main job.”