Former Australian captain Allan Border expects the upcoming Test tour of India to be an acid test for Pat Cummins and Co. The former left-handed batter noted that Australia haven't won that often in India and believes it will be a tough assignment.
Australia will hope to win their first Test series in India when they take on Rohit Sharma and Co. in the first of the four Tests in Nagpur on February 9. Australia also have an away Ashes series in June as they aim to win in England for the first time since 2001.
Speaking to ABC Sport, Border said the next 12 months will be critical for Cummins, starting with playing in India, which he described as the "final frontier." The 67-year-old said:
"That is going to be the acid test for him and the team. 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."
Australia announced their 18-man squad on Wednesday and chose four spinners in Nathan Lyon, Todd Murphy, Ashton Agar, and Mitchell Swepson. The Baggy Greens came close during the 2016-17 series but lost 2-1 in the end.
"He's proved so many people wrong" - Allan Border on Pat Cummins
Contrary to his expectations, Border feels Cummins has done exceedingly well as captain as Australia have played good cricket under him. The 156-Test veteran added:
"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. But he’s proved so many people wrong and he’s handled that so well. 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."
The 29-year-old fast bowler has captained Australia in 13 Tests, winning eight of them and losing one.
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