AUS vs ENG: Ricky Ponting Labels Pat Cummins An Old-Fashioned Test Captain

Published - 18 Jul 2023, 03:38 PM

Pat Cummins
Pat Cummins [PC: Getty]

Australia captain Pat Cummins is on the verge of creating history. The fast bowler is just one win or two draws away from helping Australia end their long winless streak on English soil.

The team from Down Under is currently leading the five-match Ashes series 2-1. The Pat Cummins-led side won the first Test by 2 wickets with their inspirational leader leading from the very front. The pace spearhead impressed in the second Test too as the visitors won the game by 43 runs at Lord’s.

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Australia suffered their first defeat of the series in the third Test when England beat them by three wickets at Edgbaston. Before the Ashes series, Pat Cummins had also led Australia to their first-ever World Test Championship title with a thumping 209-run win over India last month.

He now needs just one win or two draws in the remaining two Tests to become the first Australia captain since the legendary Steve Waugh to win an Ashes series on English soil. Australia have not managed to win an away Ashes series since 2001. After Waugh, the likes of Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke, and Tim Paine tried their luck but failed.

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Ricky Ponting on Pat Cummins’ captaincy:

As Pat Cummins is standing on the verge of creating history, former Australia captain Ricky Ponting has hailed him as an old-fashioned Test captain. Comparing Pat Cummins with his England counterpart Ben Stokes, the legendary cricketer opined that while the former lets “plans unravel”, the latter tries to make something happen every ball.

“I think this has been one of the most tactical series that I could remember, because of the two different styles of play, probably two contrasting styles of leadership as well,” Ponting told ‘The ICC Review’.

“Pat [Cummins] is more of an old-fashioned sort of Test match captain where he sort of lets sets fields and lets plans sort of unravel and is happy to do it over a long period of time, whereas Stokes is a bit the other way.

“He’s sort of trying to make something happen every ball and therefore sometimes plans never really have a chance to eventuate,” Ponting added.

Pat Cummins has done a good job as Test captain since replacing Paine in 2021. Under him, Australia thrashed England 4-0 in the last Ashes before winning against Pakistan, West Indies, and South Africa. They also drew the Test series in Sri Lanka last year.

“Look, Pat is still fairly young in the job. Let’s not forget that he’s only been doing it for a couple of years now and I’m sure he’s learning along the way,” Ponting said. “I’m not going to question Pat at all. The fact that Australia are 2-1 up says he’s done a good job to me.

“There’ll always be little things in a game. When you lose, there are always little things in a game that people are happy to talk about. But at the end of the day, I think the tactics are better off waiting to see what the result is at the end of the series and then we’ll be able to critique both captains on the result,” he added.

The fourth Ashes Test is scheduled to start on Wednesday (July 19) in Manchester. Australia will be looking to bounce back after suffering the defeat in the previous Test.

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