The untold story of Australian pacer Pat Cummins
Pat Cummins drums up speeds in excess of 140kmph despite missing a centimetre in the middle finger of his right hand.
What’s the story?
During the ongoing third Test between India and Australia, former Australian fast bowler and a commentator for the official broadcasters, Brett Lee revealed a secret about the man who was hailed as his heir, Pat Cummins.
Brett Lee pointed out that the 23-year-old pacer, who is playing a Test after 6 years, has the middle finger of his right hand cut off by a centimetre and went on to narrate how he lost it. As a kid, Cummins’ sister had slammed a door on his finger. The injury sustained was so severe that doctors had to amputate the tip of his middle finger.
In case you didn’t know
Pat Cummins was one of the most important members of the ODI and T20I squad but the same cannot be said of the longer formats as he returned to the Australian Test team after six years. The New South Welshman made his Test debut against South Africa in 2011 and suffered various injuries that kept him out of the sport for the last few years.
The board wanted to preserve him for the all-important Ashes that will take place in Australia later this year but an injury to Mitchell Starc made them recall the pacer much before the Ashes. He got out for a duck in his return match and with the ball, he looked impressive and bounced out KL Rahul, who was looking good for a big one.
Even before making his debut, Cummins, in an exclusive with Cricket Australia, recalled that incident. He also added that missing a part of the middle finger doesn’t affect him when bowling. His sister however, sheds tears when recalling that incident even today.
"I lost the top of my finger when I was about three or four (years old). It got slammed in a door and I lost about a centimetre off the top of my finger. It doesn't really affect me because (the finger) is about the same length as the other one (index finger). I still get my sister in tears … (because) she slammed the door on it."
Extra cover: 10 things to know about Pat Cummins
Being a right-arm fast bowler, Cummins manages to generate a lot of pace and swing movement without the top of his middle finger. He deserves a lot of appreciation for coming a long way and representing his country at the top level while overcoming a physical deformity.
As Brett Lee said, it has also given him a big advantage as both his middle finger and index finger are the exact same length, something that might aid the ball coming out with a nice seam position.