Patrick James Cummins
May 08, 1993, Westmead, Sydney
Right hand Bat
Right arm Fast
Earmarked as a potential star from a young age, Pat Cummins made his Test debut as an 18-year-old but had to wait six years for his next appearance as injuries struck a body that could not withstand the workload. The bowler who emerged in 2017 was a thoroughbred quick who became one of the standout players in the world and, in late 2021, Australia's Test captain in dramatic circumstances.
Cummins burst onto the scene with a sensational Test debut, taking a match total of seven wickets to set up a thrilling two-wicket win to square the series against South Africa at the Wanderers. He had made his debut for New South Wales during the 2010-11 season and was particularly impressive in his maiden Big Bash season. Touted to be a future leader of Australia's pace attack, he was offered a central contract for 2011-12, becoming the youngest player to be contracted since the current system was introduced in 1998.
Then came the injuries. He suffered repeated stress fractures in his lower back and did not play another Test for six years, until the 2017 tour of India. But all the pain and rehab of those intervening years appeared to have been worthwhile as his body toughened up to the rigours of international cricket.
In the wake of Australia's ball-tampering scandal he became arguably the nation's shining light in a cricketing sense. He was absent through the various 2018 winter tours immediately after the controversy due to a back injury but was monumental in the losing home series against India and was subsequently rewarded with the Test vice-captaincy against Sri Lanka. He became the No. 1 ranked Test bowler in the world and claimed Australia's coveted Allan Border Medal as the 2018-19 men's cricketer of the year. He was immense during the 2019 Ashes in England and through another home series defeat against India in 2020-21, typified by a relentlessness with ball in hand and tremendous stamina.
Having been identified as a future captain, his rise to the position came earlier than expected when Tim Paine resigned shortly before the 2021-22 Ashes. However, in a mark of the cricketer and leader Cummins had become it was, given the circumstances, almost a seamless transition. A few months later he had retained the Ashes and secured victory in Pakistan on Australia's first tour of the country in 24 years.
Batting & Fielding