Paine's fluent play may force Marsh, Watson into unfamiliar roles

Posted By: Staff

Sydney, Oct 27 (ANI): Australian wicketkeeper batsman Tim Paine's fluent play at the top of the order has impressed skipper Ricky Ponting so much that other openers in the squad (Shane Watson and Shaun Marsh) will have to settle down for an unfamiliar role during second ODI in Nagpur.

Ponting said Paine's good performance at the top of the order in 2009 had impressed him greatly, never more so than from the other end in Sunday's first match at Vadodara.

In 14 appearances as a keeper/batsman, Paine has 439 runs at 33.76, but it is the manner of those runs as much as the volume that has impressed the Australian skipper.

"Painey's just playing so well up there, he gives it a good, solid foundation and he's scoring at a pretty good rate as well. The way he handled things the other day was terrific," The Sydney Morning Herald quoted Ponting, as saying.

"He played and missed a few times with the new ball but once again when the spinners came on, he plays the spinners particularly well.

"There'll be no risk if he had to start against spin in the middle order, but he's doing a good job at the top and he and Watson have shared some great partnerships over the last 12-15 games for us.

"We know Shaun's a ready made opener and can do a good job for us, but Painey and Watson have done a good job and that's the thing we're going to have to get right today," he added.

The team selection and batting order decision rests with Ponting and tour selector David Boon. (ANI)

Story first published: Tuesday, October 27, 2009, 15:35 [IST]
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