Pat Cummins taking inspiration from Mitchell Johnson ahead of Ashes
What's the story?
Australian fast bowler Pat Cummins has urged England to practice their bouncers before they arrive in Australia for the Ashes that begins on November 23. Cummins has fired an early Ashes warning to the visitors and spoke about taking inspiration from Mitchell Johnson's incredible performance in the 13/14 Ashes.
The fast bowler added that as England play on slower wickets, the wickets in Australia will be to Australia's advantage and they will be looking to use the bounce to their advantage. Cummins said: "Hope you practice your bouncers because we'll be bowling a lot of them. No one really likes it if you've got real pace and real accuracy, especially those kind of guys."
He also added that he would love the essay that Johnson played to perfection in the 13/14 Ashes.
"I'd love to play that role. I think we're lucky that there's a few of us who are all pretty tall and get a bit of bounce and like to bowl with a bit of pace. Hopefully the wickets have a bit of pace and bounce in them, there's nothing like getting your adrenaline up and then running in trying to bowl short."
In case you didn't know...
Four years ago, left-arm pacer Johnson destroyed England with a frightening combination of pace, accuracy and a short ball plan that worked to perfection. He finished with 37 wickets in that series as Australia whitewashed England 5-0.
The heart of the matter
Cummins added that Johnson showed in the last Ashes Down Under, the importance of having a really fast bowler. Australia, now have two, in form of Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins, both of whom can consistently bowl in excess of 150 kmph. He also added that a combination of velocity and verbal intimidation could just do the trick.
"I thought that was one of the things along with the 150kph bouncer that really intimidates them so not just bowling, hopefully that's not our only tool. I'm not quite quick-witted enough to come up with too many sledges but hopefully we can show our aggression in other ways," he added.
Australia are currently playing a T20I series against India. With the scores level at 1-1, the decider will be played at Hyderabad on Friday (October 13). Following that, they head home in time for the start of the Sheffield Shield, which should serve as ideal preparation for the Ashes that begins on November 23.
Although Australia have consistently had injury troubles, especially with their fast bowlers, they certainly have the attack that could intimidate England. All three of Cummins, Starc and Hazlewood are capable of bowling in excess of 140 kmph and the former two are especially adept at bowling bouncers. So England will have their task cut out for them if they are to retain the Ashes they won at home in 2015.