Pat Cummins is widely regarded as a good all-rounder with an excellent cricket mastermind, doggedly overcoming early career injuries to reach the pinnacle of the game. A decade after making his international debut, he’s not just the top bowler. in the world, but Australia’s 47th test skipper, elevated to one of the country’s hottest roles following the departure of Tim Paine following a sexting scandal. “He has the utmost respect from his teammates and everyone in world cricket. He earned it because of the way he conducted himself,” Test legend Shane Warne said of the player. 28 years old born in Sydney.
Designated as a potential star from a young age, Cummins burst onto the scene at the age of 18, taking seven wickets to field a two wicket victory and win the man of the match in a test against South Africa in Johannesburg in 2011.
He also made waves for New South Wales and in the Twenty20 Big Bash League, but then came injuries that kept him from playing another test for six long years.
A series of stress fractures in his lower back derailed his career and beset him with doubts.
“I just remember being super frustrated,” Cummins said last year. “Everyone wanted to talk about my debut, but I wanted to prove myself over and over again and show that it wasn’t just once.
“I felt like the only thing that was really holding me back was my body, and there wasn’t really an end in sight. It was a tough few years.”
He came out of those dark times – and the pain and rehab that came with it – a stronger person and cricketer and his persistence selected him for the Australian tour of India again in 2017.
With his body hardened, he came out of this sub-continental test unscathed and quickly became a mainstay in all three formats alongside compatriots Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc – not only a constant and reliable stimulator, but a devastator.
His 34 tests gave 164 wickets at 21.59, to go with 111 ODI scalps and 42 in T20.
“Pat is extremely intelligent, an exceptional player and has an excellent cricket brain so he is ideal for the role,” former Australian captain Greg Chappell said in a column for the Sydney Morning Herald last week.
“The crowds love him and see him for what he is – clean skin, Australia still wholeheartedly and a resilient guy who has overcome injuries with persistence, dedication and strength of character.”
Cummins was elevated to vice-skipper in 2019, but has little experience as a captain himself.
Captains traditionally line up near the wicket to control procedures and as Australia’s first modern-era fast pitcher to wear the armband, he will be forced to rely heavily on experienced teammates.
Michael Clarke, another former captain, told reporters he would need all hands on deck to support him as Australia takes on the old English foe in five tests, from Brisbane on December 8 .
“I think (Steve) Smithy, Davey Warner, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood, these guys all have a leadership role to play. Patty is going to need them all,” he said. .
“That’s why I think the time would be right for Pat Cummins because he has these senior players around him and I think it would be important for Patty with his workload and definitely (to get a feel for) what it takes to become captain of Australia. “
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