England’s World Cup hero, Ben Stokes was born and brought up in New Zealand. And the Australian captain, Tim Paine went on to remind Stokes of his Kiwi heritage on Day 5 of the first Ashes Test.
Before lunch, Paine was heard crystal clear on the stump mic saying, “Sir Richard Hadlee, Sir Ben Stokes.” He mentioned New Zealand’s greatest-ever all-rounder and associated him with the man who aspired to be England’s next big thing.
Stokes had spent the first 12 years of his life in New Zealand before shifting to England. He also turned down nominations for the New Zealander of the Year award last month.
This is not the first time Paine’s light-hearted jibe has been captured on the stump mic. The keeper kept pricking with his words during the Border-Gavaskar series in the past.
In the Perth Test, the sledging expert was heard saying to Indian opener Murali Vijay, “Murali I know he’s (Virat Kohli) your captain but you can’t seriously like him? You can’t seriously like the bloke.”
Also during the Boxing Day Test, Paine took a provocative dig at Rishabh Pant. He mocked Pant as if approaching him for the babysitting task.
“Tell you what, big MS (Dhoni) is back in the one-day squad too, we might get him down to the (Hobart) Hurricanes this bloke, we need a batter,” Paine poked while Pant was batting.
“Fancy that Pant, extend your little Aussie holiday. Beautiful town Hobart too. Get you a nice apartment on the water front.”
“Have him over for dinner. Can you babysit? (Can I) take the wife to the movies one night, you can look after the kids?”