Tim Paine sexting scandal, accuser Renee Ferguson questioned over pub job

A woman who accused former Australian Test cricket captain Tim Paine and others of sending explicit texts to her has been quizzed over two pub jobs.

Renee Ferguson launched a sexual harassment claim and alleged she was subjected to sexually explicit and unsolicited messages while she worked at Cricket Tasmania between 2015 and 2017.

The former staffer alleges she received sexually explicit and unsolicited messages from Tim Paine when he was an Aussie Test cricketer and from his brother-in-law Shannon Tubb.

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She also claims when she reached out to managers at the sporting body about the sexual harassment she was ignored.

But Cricket Tasmania is fighting the workplace sexual harassment claims and wants the case thrown out because of the “very long delay” in Ms Ferguson launching legal action.

Tim Paine stepped down as Australian Test cricket captain after explicit text messages he sent became public.  Picture: Chris Kidd
Tim Paine stepped down as Australian Test cricket captain after explicit text messages he sent became public. Picture: Chris KiddSource: News Corp Australia

She only filed legal documents in November 2021, nearly three years after the events took place.

Ms Ferguson appeared via videolink from Bundaberg, where the organisation’s lawyer, Bruce McTaggart SC, probed her over the delay.

She claimed it was because of her poor mental health, including “severe anxiety and depression”, and the fact she did not want to revisit trauma endured during her time working at Cricket Tasmania.

But Mr McTaggart argued during the time she claimed she couldn’t file documents on mental health grounds she was able to write to Cricket Australia and lodge the workers’ compensation claim.

“It doesn’t ring true,” Mr McTaggart said.

He also quizzed her about her work history, including her role at pubs in Melbourne and Bendigo in the years after she worked at the sporting body.

An article was aired in court about her role at the Golden Square Hotel at Bendigo, which listed her as the owner under her maiden name.

Ms Ferguson explained it was not like a fulltime job and denied she was running it up until August 2021.

She denied working there up to 80 hours a week despite putting it in a message sent to her former partner.

“It was probably a fabrication in the text message – the hotel wasn’t open seven days a week during Covid,” she said.

Renee Ferguson was questioned about the reason for the delay in bringing her sexual harassment case to court. Picture: Chris KiddSource: News Corp Australia

She told the court that could be the time she spent at the pub, since the landlord requested she stay there during the height of the pandemic in 2020.

When her partner wanted to cancel the license, she said she wanted to take over to get out of the debt he’d left the landlord in.

The Cricket Tasmania lawyer also quizzed her about a workers’ compensation claim she made over bullying at a new job in 2018.

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