Sydney, July 5: Missing out on the World Test Championship final was a "bitter pill to swallow", said a frustrated Australia red-ball skipper Tim Paine, who enjoined the match referees to be more consistent while imposing points penalty for slow over rates.
New Zealand were crowned Test champions after notching up an eight-victory over India in Southampton last month.
Australia, who were front runners in the race to reach the WTC final, were docked four points for slow over rate during the Boxing Day Test against India.
The series was Paine and company's last chance to earn WTC points after their tour of South Africa was postponed.
However, India had a home series against England to earn points and Virat Kohli and his men did enough to book a spot alongside New Zealand in the WTC final.
"Bitterly disappointed that we weren't there (WTC final) because of over rates," Paine told reporters.
"We've always got things in place to try to help out with that, but unfortunately it doesn't always work. Unfortunately, we're the team that I think has borne the brunt of it for an over rate."
Paine called for more consistency while handing out points penalties.
"There's been a lot of Test match cricket in the last two years where teams haven't bowled their overs and I'm not sure how many teams lost points out of it.
"I think there needs to be a little bit more consistency around it, given now that the prize is so big and a couple of overs can cost you four points.
The wicketkeeper-batsman suggested that Australia was the only team to be docked points for an over rate offence.
"We were behind on our overs, and that's what it is. My thing is just with the consistency. I haven't played in too many days where the full overs have been bowled, and to my knowledge there hasn't been other teams docked points.
"Yeah, it's a bitter pill to swallow when you're the only team that's been docked points and you see it happen Test match after Test match, after Test match."
The 36-year-old revealed it was difficult for him to watch the summit clash between India and New Zealand.
"I didn't watch too much of it. I watched the last day. I turned it on excited to watch the first day. I thought I was excited, and then got a bit dirty and didn't watch it."
"I tuned in for the last day and it was bloody exciting, it was great cricket to watch."