pat cummins
Pat Cummins (AFP Photo)

Pat Cummins was entrusted with the selection of new balls for the Australia bowlers during their ongoing Test series against India but in Sydney, he was stripped of the important responsibility with fellow paceman Mitchell Starc taking his place.

Cummins, the third-ranked bowler in Test cricket, was at the receiving end of a friendly banter with the other two leading pacers – Starc and Josh Hazlewood – who blamed him for picking bad balls which failed to find regular or reverse swing. In the third Test as India batted for almost 170 overs, Australia pacers failed to produce reverse swing.

After India opted to bat first, Starc was joined by Mitchell Marsh in picking out the perfect ball out of 12 that would potentially help them as they target to draw level I the series after losing at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

“The other two bowlers blame me because I pick the ball out of the box and they think I pick a bad one,” Cummins had said ahead of the fourth Test that got underway in Sydney on Thursday. “It’s just one of those things. Maybe on day one and two (in Melbourne) when we bowled the wicket wasn’t as abrasive and that makes a big difference. We tried to bowl some cross-seamers and it didn’t seem to scuff up as much as a couple of days later. Sometimes you get a ball that goes and sometimes you get a ball that doesn’t.”

Cummins produced a brilliant all-round effort in MCG where he picked up nine wickets across the two innings apart from top-scoring for Australia in the second dig with 63.