Pat CUmmins-GI
Pat Cummins should be the 1st alternative especially when winning the series is of utmost importance for the Australians at the moment © Getty Images

When Australia lost the Ashes 3-0 on their England tour in 2013, the One-Day International (ODI) side had made it up by sealing the five-match ODI series 2-1 with two games being washed out due to rain. The visitors once again are in the same position, having been awfully defeated 1-3 in the ongoing Ashes 2015 with the final game yet to played, at the Oval. The only way to regain their lost confidence is to outplay the hosts in the shorter format and the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 triumph will definitely give them the required push to face ’New England’ with the typically strong “Aussie” mind-set. There have been reports about Cricket Australia (CA) recalling the fast bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile for the upcoming ODI series. However, Sakshi Gupta explains that there are other bowlers such as Pat Cummins and James Pattinson who could be better choices for the crucial spot in the playing XI. READ: Jason Gillespie blames lack of First-Class experience for Australia’s Ashes 2015 loss

The right-arm fast bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile will reportedly be competing against Josh Hazlewood, who is a part of the current Australian Test team, for the place in the 15-man squad for the upcoming ODI series in England.

The 27-year-old Coulter-Nile is at present playing in India for the Australian A side. They are involved in a triangular series that includes South Africa A after the two unofficial Tests. After a flying start to the series with three wickets in the first game against the Proteas, Coulter-Nile went wicketless in Australia A’s second match, which was against the hosts. Despite that, Australia A were able to win the game by a massive margin of 119 runs. READ: Australia should pick Brad Haddin for Oval Test to give him proper send-off

The Ashes 2015 will be over soon and the ODIs against England are impending. Australian selectors can consider Patrick Cummins, the 22-year-old pacer who last featured in an international match which saw a dramatic one-wicket loss to New Zealand, in the group matches of the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup. He managed just two games in the event, wherein the pacer claimed five crucial wickets. With 19 wickets off 12 ODIs and 3/28 as his best figures, Cummins is surely a better alternative, especially when winning the series is of utmost importance for the Australians at the moment.

For Australia to win against England, which will be equally challenging as the hosts are buoyed by the ‘New England’ concept in limited-overs cricket, they cannot afford to make selection errors like they did in the Ashes 2015. Australia will find the going very tough against England, who will bring in fresh faces for the ODI series, unlike the tourists whose team will largely consist of the same battered men from the Ashes 2015.
Cummins was former cricketer Michael Holding’s first choice for Mitchell Starc’s replacement when the latter sustained a strain in his ankle in the first Test at Cardiff after a five-wicket haul. “I wouldn’t go for [Peter] Siddle as I think he would do a similar job to what Hazlewood, who doesn’t have great pace but was very consistent in Cardiff on a slow pitch, is already doing. If I was involved in the Australian hierarchy or dressing-room, I would go for [Pat] Cummins,” Holding said. READ: Australia’s humiliating 1st innings is reminiscent of Brazil’s 1-7 loss to Germany

On the other hand, Peter Siddle also stands a chance for the spot against Hazlewood. Although, the numbers do not speak for him in the ODIs, the amount of international experience that would come along with him will immensely help the young bowling attack.

Another strong contender can be James Pattison, who was a regular face in the ODI side between 2011 and 2012 until a string of injuries struck him. The 25-year-old stands out as he had demonstrated emphatically by taking a 5 for 27 on Test debut that was against New Zealand in the 2011 home series. He has featured in 13 ODIs, taking 16 wickets with an economy of 5.38, which is the best among all the above bowlers. Along with Coulter-Nile, Pattison is in India playing the triangular series at present. He has four wickets to his name from a little more than 20-overs spell from three games.

Although, the Australian selectors would not want to try a debutant in a crucial series but it might be interesting to watch Ashton Agar play in the yellow jersey, not forgetting the 98 that he had scored at No. 11 in his Test debut in England in the 2013 Ashes’ first Test, which the hosts had won at Trent Bridge. Agar shared an excellent 163-run stand for the 10th with late Phillip Hughes and the bulk of patience and quality cricket displayed by the all-rounder was commendable. Agar is touring India as a part of Australia A side and the point of interest here is that he is the leading wicket-taker of the tri-series with seven wickets in two games so far. He claimed a brilliant 5 for 39 in his 10-over spell against India-A, and eventually the visitors went on to win the match by three-wickets. READ: Steve Smith must lead Australia against England in 5th Ashes 2015 Test at The Oval

The 21-year-old, who has been waiting to get a call for the international level recently approached Indian batsman Gautam Gambhir, who was in Western Australia sometime back for some tips. “I spoke to Gambhir when he was in Western Australia for a game in Perth for two weeks. It was a great experience because he played against me there. He is a good player of spin and gave me some vital feedback on my bowling. I am now working on them and, hopefully, it will come to good use here.” A man, who is a combination of a dedication and talent, deserves a chance to play along the senior men.

(Sakshi Gupta is a sports fanatic, enthusiastic and the mantra of her life is “Do only that what you enjoy”. She can be followed on Twitter @sakshi2929)