Australia captain Tim Paine has cast doubt over his one-day international future after his touring side were thumped 5-0 by England, who sealed the series whitewash with a one-wicket victory in Manchester on Sunday.
The 33-year-old Paine, Australia’s Test captain, was handed the role for the one-day portion of their limited-overs tour of England but chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns said at the time it was probably only a stop-gap measure.
The wicketkeeper, leading the side while regular captain Steve Smith serves a 12-month ban following a ball-tampering scandal, scored just 36 runs in the series as England outclassed the World Cup holders with their powerful batting lineup.
Fellow wicketkeeper Alex Carey played the final two games in Durham and at Old Trafford, but only as a batsman, and has been appointed vice-captain for the sole Twenty20 match against England on 27 June and their T20 tour of Zimbabwe in July.
Aaron Finch is Australia’s T20 captain.
“All I know is I was coming here to do this series and I’ve said a few times before, when you are my age it’s a bit foolish to look ahead,” Paine told Cricket Australia’s website.
“Certainly, I am really looking forward to captaining the test team and continuing how I have been playing in that format.
“But where I go with the rest of my cricket is something we will discuss in the coming weeks.”
Paine was thrust into the test captaincy role after Australian cricket was rocked by the ball-tampering incident in South Africa in March, creating a leadership vacuum with both Smith and his deputy David Warner handed one-year suspensions.
World Cup Prospects
He was then also surprisingly given the captaincy for the series in England, with Finch given the vice-captaincy.
Paine, however, said his struggles with the bat in England had been tough.
“Its been difficult, you play cricket to do well and this series I haven’t done that,” Paine, whose highest score in the series was 15, added. “I haven’t played anywhere near as well as I would have liked to.
“That happens and it’s certainly not through a lack of effort, I am trying my guts out and working really hard, I have just had one of those series.
“I started off poorly and couldn’t get it back on track.”
Despite the series defeat, Paine believes it is too early to write off Australia’s chances at next year’s World Cup being hosted by England and Wales.
“We’ve got a number of players who weren’t in this squad who have played in and won World Cups. They know what it takes,” Paine added.
“Cricket Australia as an organisation knows what it takes and whilst I’ve heard a few times this team looks like it hasn’t got a plan or doesn’t know where it’s going, we’ve got a clear direction, we know where we’re going.”
As well as their suspended skipper and vice-captain, Australia were also without injured fast bowlers Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood for the series, with the trio expected to thrive in English conditions next year.