Australia Test captain Tim Paine is confident that he will be ready for the home Ashes series, after having decided to undergo a surgery to fix a bulging disc in his neck. Paine believes that he made the right call to go under the knife, with an aim to prolong his first-class career.
Tim Paine had been experiencing severe pain in his neck and left arm due to a bulging disc, and on advice of the surgeons, he underwent an operation earlier this week.
He believed that it was a good decision to get it operated, as he explained the process.
"Basically they've cut a big hole in my throat, moved my voice box over to the side, and gone in that way. It's a less invasive way," he told SEN Radio.
"I'm pretty happy with the decision. It was sort of getting to that touch and go stage where I either don't get it done and take the risk that I'd be right through the Ashes, or get it fixed now. After the surgeon had a look in there, he said it was a good decision to get it done."
Paine will have to rest for two weeks before commencing rehabilitation to get match-fit for the first Ashes Test in Bridbane, beginning December 8. The 36-year-old is confident about his availibility, and added that the operation would help him in prolonging his playing career, beyond his Test-playing days.
"December 8 is the first Test and I'm extremely confident I'd be right to go before then," he said.
"I'll hopefully get a Shield game in for Tassie before then and hopefully be on the winning end of a third winning Ashes would be something really special. I want to keep playing for Tasmania after my international career. To have it fixed and out of the way was the correct decision long term."
There is some sense of uncertainty over the Ashes, with the visitors having expressed serious concerns over the covid-19 protocols in Australia. Paine assured that there's not much to worry about ahead of a long season.
"The main stuff with the English guys is around the protocols with quarantine but we're not asking them to do anything that we won't be doing," he said.
"I think if we can get them out here they'll realise the conditions during Australia's Covid hubs are pretty good and nothing to worry about."