Pat Cummins has explained that he is open to the idea of leading the Australian team in the future. But the pacer was quick to admit that he needs to gain some experience in that regard before taking up the new role.
Australia recently suffered a 2-1 series defeat against an injury-ridden Indian side in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy. Since then, several former cricketers have called-for Tim Paine to step down as the captain of the Australian Test team. Pat Cummins, who is presently Paine's deputy, is in line to be the next Aussie skipper in the longest format of the game.
When asked if he would like to captain the Australian Test team, Cummns told ESPNcricinfo:
"Absolutely - at the moment I haven't got too much experience at all, just a couple of warm-up games in England and other than that it's Under-16s cricket when I last captained. So for sure it's something that's going to be more on the radar. Even to increase my experience as vice-captain if I ever need to step in or help out Painey or Finchy, I think it is something I'd like to have a crack at to find out either way, whether I enjoy it, whether I'm no good at it or whether I find it manageable."
Pat Cummins has represented Australia in 34 Tests thus far, picking up 164 wickets at an impressive average of 21.60.
Pat Cummins admits changes needed in his game if handed captaincy role
Pat Cummins also reflected on how he needs to alter his game if he is indeed handed the captaincy role. The pacer insisted that he currently tones down his mental focus scale when not bowling. But that can't be the case if he is the skipper as he always has to be mentally switched on.
"I think that would be the big one, at times, just the nature of not having to totally switch on, you take the opportunity to switch off. That'd probably be the biggest change, but whether that's a dealbreaker or not, I'd have to try it first I think. Naturally you try to stay pretty involved in a game, so always thinking about the game in the background. Just taking that extra step to be a decision-maker, it might be a small step or a big step, but keen to give it a crack and see how it goes," Pat Cummins added.
Australia's three-match Test tour of South Africa was postponed over coronavirus fears. As a result, New Zealand became the first team to qualify for the ICC World Test Championship final. However, Australia can still reach the showpiece event at Lord's later this year, depending on the outcome of the India-England series.