Melbourne, June 23 (IANS) Australia Test captain Tim Paine stated he will be keeping a close eye on proceedings when England lock horns against West Indies in the much-anticipated Test series starting July 8.
The three-Test series will mark the resumption of cricket after the sport was suspended in March in the wake of coronavirus pandemic.
Paine feels there will be few new rules and regulations that will have to be followed religiously during the series and that is why everyone will be eager to watch the contest as to how it unfolds.
The matches will be played behind closed doors but the one thing that has caused a huge debate around the world is the ban on use of saliva on match balls.
“I am fascinated like anyone is to watch some Test cricket again and to see exactly how the West Indies and England series is going to work and the different things that they are going to be doing that haven’t been done before in cricket,” Paine told reporters via Zoom as per cricket.com.au.
“I think it is going to be interesting and certainly for me and Justin (Langer) and the Australian international players it’s something we are going to watch very closely.”
Australia, meanwhile, are currently scheduled to play their first Test of the revamped FTP in November, against Afghanistan. It will be followed by the four-match Border-Gavaskar Trophy against India in December.
“The next Test we’ll play is our summer, so we’re really lucky here that we’ll have a pre-season, all our nationally contracted players have gone back to their states, which is a great thing for both them and all our young domestic players in the country to be learning off Steve Smith, Marnus [Labuschagne], Pat Cummins and all these guys,” Paine told reporters.
“You get a mental freshen up, which your David Warners and Pats and Steves never get, but also these guys are getting to do a full pre-season, getting their bodies right, which they haven’t been able to do for a number of years.
“I think our Australian cricketers will be as well prepared as they’ve ever been come their first game, whether that’s Test cricket, one-day cricket or T20.”