Cricketer Tim Paine takes mental break

Tim Paine has taken an indefinite mental health break from cricket which means that he is unavailable for the start of the Ashes Series against England, and raises the prospect that he has played his last Test.

Paine had been due to play in Tasmania’s Marsh Cup game today before linking up with the Australia squad in Brisbane, but withdrew from the match this morning following his return to play in the 2nd XI match against South Australia during the week.

Paine’s manager, James Henderson has tweeted: “We are extremely concerned for his and Bonnie’s well-being, and will be making no further comment at this time.”

A Cricket Tasmania statement said: “Following discussions over the last 24 hours, Tim Paine has advised Cricket Tasmania that he will be taking a leave of absence from all forms of cricket for the foreseeable future

“Cricket Tasmania will continue to support Tim and his family both professionally and personally over the summer.”

Cricket Australia’s Chief Executive Officer, Nick Hockley said that the organisation would offer Paine support.

“We recognise that this is an incredibly difficult time for Tim and his family and are committed to supporting them.

“We respect and understand Tim’s decision to have a break at this time to focus on his and his family’s well-being.”