Allan Border, a legendary Australian captain, acknowledges that Pat Cummins’s leadership of the men’s national team has won him over, but believes the coming year will truly put him to the test. Tim Paine abruptly resigned prior to the Australia-England Ashes series in 2021–2022, and Cummins was named Test captain in his place.
Under the speed spearhead’s leadership, Australia won the Ashes 4-0 and has subsequently won series against Pakistan, the West Indies, and South Africa. Last year, Cummins’ team also played Sri Lanka away from home and tied 1-1. Next month, Australia will embark on a four-Test tour to India before playing host to a revitalized England in the Ashes later in the year.
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Pat Cummins’ Captaincy Will Be Tested: Allan Border
Although Pat Cummins had a “great run” after taking over as captain, according to Border, the away series versus India and England would put his leadership in jeopardy. Australia hasn’t won a series in India since 2004, and their last Ashes victory over England came in 2001. Nevertheless, four years ago, it managed to retain the urn with a 2-2 tie.
“That is going to be the acid test for him and the team,” Border told ABC Sport.
“The next 12 months is the real test for that side and Pat’s captaincy in particular because India is just about the last frontier for the Australian cricket team. We haven’t won there very often. It’s a hard place to play and a hard place to win and England is the same.”
Pat Cummins Has Proved So Many People Wrong: Allan Border
Border admitted that he first had misgivings about Pat Cummins being named captain in 2021 because he was worried it may have an impact on his bowling. He has subsequently been moved by Cummins’ adaptation to the part, though.
“I was not as keen to see a fast bowler [appointed captain], not necessarily the individual but more just the fact that he’s our number-one fast bowler,” Border said.
“But he’s proved so many people wrong that and he’s handled that so well. Maybe the make-up of the team has helped, where he’s got quite a few senior players that he can bounce things off and they can sort of take over to a certain degree when he’s got the ball in his hand when he’s bowling.
“I take my hat off to him. He’s done fantastically well. They look like a happy side. They’re playing very good cricket and that’s all you can do as captain.”