Tim Paine signs up for BBL hit with Hobart
Test captain Tim Paine has signed up for a hit with Hobart Hurricanes and will return to the Big Bash League for the first time since the 2017-18 final.
Cricket Australia has cleared a window for the nation's best players to be available for the BBL after their four-Test series against India ends on January 19.
However, there were fears that Test players would largely bypass the Twenty20 competition because of concerns about burnout.
Steve Smith and Josh Hazlewood won't return for Sydney Sixers this summer, while David Warner is also expected to opt for a break instead of a BBL stint.
But Mitchell Starc (Sixers) and Marnus Labuschagne (Brisbane Heat) both recently signed BBL contracts, while Paine has confirmed he will don the purple this summer.
"I'm thrilled to be back with the Hurricanes for this 10th edition of the Big Bash League," the wicketkeeper said.
"The 'Canes have been one of the strongest teams in the competition over the past couple of seasons, so to have a small opportunity to be a part of and contribute to that environment where required is something I'm really looking forward to.
"The talent in our squad is phenomenal.
"As a proud Tasmanian, there's no team I would rather make my return to the Big Bash with than Tasmania's team."
Cricket Tasmania chief executive Dominic Baker was thrilled with Paine's decision.
"What he brings the team from an experience perspective is invaluable and he will be a great asset for the continual off-field development of our group as well," Baker said.
Paine has sat out the past two BBL seasons and was part of Seven's commentary team for the league during 2019-20.
The 35-year-old was part of Hobart's inaugural squad and captained the side from 2013 to 2017.
Paine's commitment to the franchise was evident when he made a pitch-side recruitment sell to India keeper Rishabh Pant at the MCG during the 2018 Boxing Day Test.
© AAP 2020