Tim Paine has announced his resignation as Australian Test captain today in Hobart.
In a tearful media conference at 2:30pm local time, Paine, in front of the press, read a short statement with the announcement.
"Today I'm announcing my decision to stand down as the captain of the Australian Men's Test team. It's an incredibly difficult decision but the right one for me, my family and cricket."
The decision came after allegations emerged of misconduct back in 2017.
"As a background on my decision, nearly four years ago, I was involved in a text exchange with a then-colleague," Paine said. "At the time, the exchange was the subject of a thorough CA Integrity Unit investigation, throughout which I fully participated in and openly participated in."
"Although exonerated, I deeply regretted this incident at the time, and still do today. I spoke to my wife and family at the time and am enormously grateful for their forgiveness and support.
"We thought this incident was behind us and that I could focus entirely on the team, as I have done for the last three or four years.
"However, I recently became aware that this private text exchange was going to become public. On reflection, my actions in 2017 do not meet the standard of an Australian cricket captain, or the wider community.
"I'm deeply sorry for the hurt and pain that I have caused to my wife, my family, and to the other party. I'm sorry for any damage that this does to the reputation of our sport.
"And I believe that it is the right decision for me to stand down as captain, effective immediately. I do not want this to become an unwelcome disruption to the team ahead of what is a huge Ashes series.
"I've been blessed with a wonderful, loving and supportive family, and it breaks my heart to know how much I've let them down. They have always stood by me, been my most loyal fans, and I'm indebted to them for their support."
Paine was appointed the 46th Australian Test captain in 2018, taking over from Steve Smith.
He captained the team during the 2019 Ashes series, where Australia retained the coveted trophy on foreign soil for the first time in 18 years.
Cricket Australia Chair Richard Freudenstein says the board immediately accepted his resignation.
“Tim felt it was in the best interests of his family and Australian cricket to take this decision to step down as captain.
“The Board has accepted Tim’s resignation and will now work through a process with the National Selection Panel of identifying and appointing a new captain."
“Tim will continue to be available for selection in the Test team through the Ashes summer.”
Pending approval from the Cricket Australia Board, vice-captain Pat Cummins will be announced as captain of the Australian Men's Test team.
The men’s Ashes begins next month with Australia hosting England in Brisbane on December 8.
You can watch all of the men's Ashes live on ICC.tv in selected regions.
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Men's Ashes fixtures
First Test: 8-12 December – The Gabba, Brisbane
Second Test: 16-20 December – Adelaide Oval
Third Test: 26-30 December – Melbourne Cricket Ground
Fourth Test: 5-9 January– Sydney Cricket Ground
Fifth Test: 14-18 January– Perth Stadium
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