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Would be surprised if same four bowlers were used for all five Tests: Cummins

 
Brisbane, Nov 17 (IANS) Australia pacer Pat Cummins said he would be surprised if the same four bowlers in the Test team will be used throughout all the five Tests of the 2021/22 Ashes, starting from December 8. He added that with Australia having a huge pool of fast bowlers, rotation will not be an issue.

In Australia's squad for the first two Tests of The Ashes, the pace troika of Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood have been picked along with Jhye Richardson and Michael Neser.

In the 2019 Ashes in England, where Australia retained the urn, Cummins played all five matches with other pacers rotated. But in the 2020/21 Border Gavaskar Trophy, Cummins, Starc and Hazlewood played all four matches but were fatigued as India came from behind to win 2-1.

"I'd be surprised if the same four bowlers were used for all five Tests. That's pretty rare, especially the five-Test match summer. But I certainly won't be putting my hand up to be rested unless I've got something going wrong," Cummins was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo on Wednesday.

"The great thing is we've got a huge stable of fast bowlers. So yeah, I don't think it'll be a huge issue if someone's not able to get up for a Test or someone's just red-lining a little bit. Someone else can slot in. When someone's I guess rested it is normally more to it than just purely workload. There's always niggles and small little injuries that we're dealing with, basically after every single Test match," added Cummins, the vice-captain of Australia's Test team.

Talking about his own preparation for The Ashes after winning the T20 World Cup in the UAE, Cummins believes he will be raring to go ahead of the first Test in Brisbane.

"My body feels as good as it has in a couple of years. There's no niggles. I think the first, I guess, benefit of the short spells is we're all feeling really fresh. I always feel like it's better to be underdone than overdone coming into a big Test series.

"For now it's just trying to work back from that day one, get a few good bowls in, I think. We've got access to quite a few centre wickets. So we'll have three, four, five centre wickets where we try and have relatively big days, you know, bowl a couple of spells on those days. And we'll be ready to go."

Cummins was happy that Richardson is on the verge of playing for Australia again. Richardson has not featured in a Test match for Australia since 2019 when he dislocated his shoulder while fielding in the second ODI against Pakistan in Sharjah and found himself out of the 2019 World Cup and the subsequent Ashes tour.

"It's really great to see him back around the squad. He was on the verge of a World Cup and an Ashes series a couple of years ago before having a shoulder injury, so it's great to see him get back and bowling well, fully fit, and hopefully he kind of starts off where he left off against Sri Lanka a few years ago."

--IANS

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