Many Indian fans remember the comic banter that went on between Rishabh Pant and Tim Paine on India's tour of Australia in 2018-19. The duo, who are both wicketkeepers, used to have a go at each other every time one of them came to bat and it resulted in some very funny banter being heard on the stump mic. Paine, however, also benefitted from the banter in a way that he did not expect.
Tim Paine and Rishabh Pant shared an iconic moment when Paine urged Pant to join the Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash League (BBL) and babysit his kids while he and Bonnie went to the movies. The sledge was an attempt to invoke a reaction from Pant over him being ignored in favour of MS Dhoni for the ODI series, which were to follow the Tests which were being played. The moment became the source of a lot of memes and eventually, Paine's wife Bonnie even posted a viral picture with Pant that took the internet by a storm.
Tim Paine to @RishabPant777 at Boxing Day Test: "You babysit? I'll take the wife to the movies one night, you'll look after the kids?"— ICC (@ICC) January 1, 2019
*Challenge accepted!* 👶
(📸 Mrs Bonnie Paine) pic.twitter.com/QkMg4DCyDT
While commentating on a Big Bash League match, the current Australian Test skipper Tim Paine talked about why he chose to sledge Pant. Paine added how the Australians were just bored and unable to get a wicket. He also mentioned that Pant's talent is undeniable and he did not break down in front of sledging. However, there were a few lapses in Pant's concentration whenever he was sledged and that is what the Aussies tried to take advantage of.
He then revealed that after his wife posted the picture with Pant, she got "a million new Indian Instagram followers" overnight. The couple got very overwhelmed with the virality of their post since it even made it to the news. Paine claimed that he is the photographer of the viral picture.
India will be visiting Australia later this year to play another bilateral series.