A certain Steve Smith who has nothing to do with Australia or cricket, in general, has come out in support of a random Internet stranger who goes by the name Tim Payne. Their fault? Both of these Twitter users share the names with Aussie cricketers, who were part of the squad that lost to a young, spirited Team India on Tuesday, a Test match that rewrote history in many ways.
The Test win along with India retaining the Border-Gavaskar trophy 2-1 on the Aussie soil meant a lot to the desi cricket lovers who live and breathe the sport. There was, however, an ugly side to the celebrations that followed the historic victory at the Gabba. The irked "fans" from the country (and outside) used the opportunity to hurl abuses and attacked the Aussie cricketers on social media to remind them they had "messed" with the wrong team. Some called them cheats, others simply wanted them to be dropped from the side.
Then came the hilarious, unfortunate goof up. So soaked were they in their outrage and "excitement", the netizens didn't bother to doublecheck who they were targeting with the choicest tweets and posts online.
One person who suffered the consequence of this Twitterstorm was a verified Twitter user by the name Tim Payne (Australian cricketer is Tim Paine) who got engulfed in the online mixup but cricket "fans" were determined to pour their agony out nonetheless.
This is how his Payne's Twitter exchanges in the past few days look like.
But I don’t want to retire, I love the wicket too much — Tim Payne (@timpayne_1) January 19, 2021
Little bit harsh — Tim Payne (@timpayne_1) January 19, 2021
I’ll just keep practicing — Tim Payne (@timpayne_1) January 19, 2021
Aware of what was unfolding, Payne played along. He also wrote to Australian skipper Tim Paine and extended his condolences.
This was when Steve Smith arrived at the scene to save his fictional skipper Payne. Just so we are on the same page, both of these Twitter users aren't affiliated to the Australian team nor are they cricketers.
"Hi mate. Welcome aboard. Let me show you where they keep the booze. You’ll need it," Smith wrote knowing exactly what Payne was being subjected to on Twitter.
And a quick glance at Smith's Twitter feed shall give you the exact picture.
Just as Payne, Smith seems to be playing along in this entire fiasco.
Earlier yesterday soon after India's win, Instagram user Tim Payne's photo was hijacked by the army of Indian trolls. It's worth noting, Indians not only got the Insta handle wrong but the person who was in the direct line of social media attack looked nothing like the Australian skipper Tim Paine they were actually after.
View this post on Instagram
Now we aren't sure if Tim Payne of Twitter is the same Tim Payne of Instagram. What we do know for sure is the Tim Paynes, Tim Paines, and the Steve Smiths of the world aren't having the best time out there. Be it cricket or social media.