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Australia – Pat Cummins’ hopeful Test team will stay together for more glory

Pat Cummins is confident Australia can handle any labor gains coming in the next few years. He is hoping that most of his Test squad in particular can stay together while he is captain, as the summer sees India and England face off.
Although the retirement of David Warner at the end of last summer marked the beginning of a changing of the guard, there is currently no expectation of a mass retirement in Test cricket. Australia were also given an opportunity to look at an uncertain future when Nathan Lyon missed last year’s three Ashes Tests through injury, although he has said he is eyeing the 2027 England series.

“It’s something we’re definitely thinking about,” Cummins told ESPNcricinfo ahead of the release Test – Season 3 on Prime Video on Friday. “We think we’re lucky because everyone has gone a few years longer than we originally expected. I hope it’s the same for Nath.

“The job is to try to make sure he gets that four or five years. We’re trying to do everything we can to get him ready for those Test matches. At his age, it all depends on his body really. That’s really going to be his. It’s such a big hurdle. [it will be about] as we can help him and he can help himself, like Jimmy Anderson did.”

Given the age of the Test squad – only Marnus Labuschagne and Cameron Green were under 30 in the last match against New Zealand – the challenge will be to ensure a big turnout, especially from the bowlers. As the ODI and T20I squads are usually formed in the World Cup round, there may be the beginning of a change after the upcoming T20 World Cup. There may be similar changes in the ODI squad after next year’s Champions Trophy.

“In recent years, one of the advantages of white-ball cricket is that we have a lot of guys playing all three formats. [that] they will rest on other points,” said Cummins. “In white-ball cricket, we have seen the emergence of young boys. So come the big tournaments or the Test matches, it has already had some exposure, and hopefully it will make the transition a little easier.”

Last year was a huge success for Australia with the World Test Championship (WTC) title, retention of the Ashes and winning the ODI World Cup, among others. The test it accounts for the first two of those. However, in the end there is a sense of missed opportunity of not being able to win the Ashes series in England despite being 2-0 up, and many members of that team are unlikely to return in 2027.

In the film, it is clear that Australia were punished for what happened at Old Trafford, when Zak Crawley led England, although the rain enabled them to keep the Ashes: “Yes, it was difficult,” said Cummins. But looking back, he chose the match at Headingley, England escaped by three wickets, where he would have loved his chance again.

“Think maybe Headingley is one that got away from us,” he said. “Manchester wasn’t the same at all, nothing went our way, but think Leeds we had chances. [it was] one or two collaborations they had, [and] maybe if we had got the wickets earlier, especially in the tail, you wish you could get them again [that].

“[I] know we bowled a few balls that might not have worked… at the time you think that’s your best way to take wickets as cheaply as possible, and it worked at Lord’s last week, but it didn’t. [at Headingley].”
Although Cummins did not set a time limit on how long he will remain as captain, he previously said that it would not be long. Coach Andrew McDonald has indicated that he will do the job for four years, so it is possible that the pairing that created a successful season has reached the halfway point.

Australia are well-placed to qualify for next year’s WTC finals – despite dropping a potentially crucial point at home to the West Indies in January – and India’s five-match series next summer could be crucial, before trips to Sri Lanka and the West. Indies complete the current cycle.

“I would love it if the second part was as successful as the first part,” Cummins said of the current WTC cycle. “A lot of things have been planned for now. Think you’re going to face the natural level of some of our older guys. Hopefully they’ll wait a little longer and be able to control their bodies until we’re done. That makes the job easier. For Andrew and I it’s a lot easier, but we’ll see.

“I’ve been very open to say that I don’t think I’m going to do this forever. I feel like I’m in a really good place right now. I feel like we’re in a really good place, so it’s not the time frame.”

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