The historic Test series, Ashes, between
Australia and England is set to start on December 8 in Brisbane, yet Australia
has not come to concord about the appointment of their next captain after the
sexting scandal forced Tim Paine to step down as Test captain in tears.
Since Paine gave up the captaincy, the
cricketing fraternity across the world has been contemplating Cricket
Australia’s next choice for the captaincy role which has been a controversial
position since the 2018 ball-tampering scandal. Steve Smith was at the helm
when the ball-tampering scandal rocked Australian cricket. He is back in the
side after serving the requisite ban along with then vice-captain David Warner.
Now as the cricket world is busy finding
the next captain for Australia along with Cricket Australia (CA) and its
selectors, one name that has been making rounds is of Australia’s all-format bowling all-rounder Pat Cummins along with 27-year-old Marnus Labuschagne. Over the years, Cummins has
developed himself as a phenomenal pacer and handy batter down the order.
Anderson, Gilchrist choose Cummins
Joining the noisy debate on choosing the
next skipper for Australia, legendry England pacer James Anderson, in an
interview with Morning Herald, chose Pat Cummins, a veteran of 69 ODIs, 37
T20Is and 34 Tests, as Australia captain for the forthcoming Ashes.
Anderson stressed that bowlers should be
named captains of teams as they think about the game better than their peers.
“I think more bowlers should be captain. Bowlers do think a lot about the
game. We are thinking cricketers now. I think he’d be good at it. You can see
he leads brilliantly in the team. He (Pat Cummins) is a leader of the bowling attack and you
can see he’s got that ability, so why not give him a chance?” Anderson asked.
As like Anderson, legendry Australia
wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist, who is an influential figure in Australian
cricket, also threw his weight behind Pat Cummins. “I think Pat Cummins is the
frontrunner there. I have got no problems with him having the first
opportunity,” Gilchrist told news agency Reuters.
Big headache for Cricket Australia
There are calls for making Steve
Smith captain again, with Australian selectors reportedly telling media that they want Smith back as captain. But Cricket Australia, already stressed due to their
misjudgement in making Paine captain who made himself involved in the sexting
in 2018, just months before getting the captaincy, will think many times before
handing the baton of captaincy to Smith again.
Pat Cummins, who grew in stature in the
team, could be Australia’s first all-rounder to lead the side since Shane
Watson who led the side in a single Test in 2012.
Cummins’ control over his bowling made him
a respected figure in the team. As he poses a clean image, he could be the
right choice for Cricket Australia. On November 17, Cummins also said he is ready to lead. “Hopefully Tim will be fine, he’s nearing 100 per cent … I’ll be ready if I have to, but I doubt that,” Cummins was quoted as saying by Channel Nine.
But Steve Smith’s wish to lead the side
that he openly said in March could make CA’s job tougher as it could lead to a
rift between two senior players. Smith’s captaincy ban expired last year. But
CA officials stopped themselves from naming him captain again.
Smith 31 and Cummins 28, age could also be a deciding factor in CA naming their