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News

'I think I'll be fine' - Cummins hopeful of being fit for Adelaide Test

"It's just a small strain so normally about a one-weeker, and if you bowl you make it worse," he says about not bowling in the final innings in Perth

Alex Malcolm
04-Dec-2022
"I'll spend the next few days rehabbing getting it right and I think it's a pretty good chance I'll be good for Adelaide"  •  Getty Images

"I'll spend the next few days rehabbing getting it right and I think it's a pretty good chance I'll be good for Adelaide"  •  Getty Images

Pat Cummins is hopeful of being fit for the second Test against West Indies, starting on Thursday in Adelaide, despite not bowling in the final innings of Australia's win in the first Test in Perth following a minor quad strain.
Cummins, who was jogging for balls in the outfield on Sunday at Perth Stadium to protect his quad, will be given right up until Thursday morning to prove his fitness. However, Australia are considering adding further pace-bowling reserves to their squad to supplement Scott Boland who is the current back-up.
Western Australia tearaway Lance Morris has put his name front and centre in the selection equation after a stunning start to the Sheffield Shield season. He bagged 3 for 22 on Sunday to nearly steal an unlikely victory against Queensland at the Gabba. Michael Neser and Mark Steketee are also in the mix for call-ups but both had heavy workloads in that same Shield game, while Sean Abbott is another in the frame after taking 4 for 56 for New South Wales against Victoria this week.
"I felt okay," Cummins said. "It was more not trying to run as opposed to being restricted to run. I felt all right. If it got a bit tighter, I was going to have a bowl but pretty happy I managed not to bowl to give myself a good chance.
"It's just a small strain so normally about a one-weeker, and if you bowl you make it worse and can make it longer. I'll spend the next few days rehabbing getting it right and I think it's a pretty good chance I'll be good for Adelaide."
"We've got five Tests and I want to make sure I'm available for all five. It's always like that. But a lot of the Test matches you leave with absolutely nothing left in the tank"
Pat Cummins
Jhye Richardson, who played last year's Adelaide Test against England, is unavailable as he has missed WA's Shield game with Queensland because of a bruised heel and has only played two of their six Shield games this summer following a variety of injury issues.
Cummins added that the medical staff would have a major say in whether he took the field in Adelaide or not, with Australia's selectors mindful that the bowlers have five Test matches to play in this home summer with very short turnarounds between them.
"It was definitely the thought process the last couple of days," Cummins said. "You don't really want to turn a one-week injury into a three or four-week injury and you potentially miss the summer. So we'll weigh all that up. As I said, I felt pretty comfortable out there. Give it a few days. It already feels pretty good.
"The physio might be less optimistic but I think I'll be fine. I'm sure I'll have running and a bit of bowling to make sure I'm right.
"I guess I'll have a similar prep to Joshy [Josh Hazlewood] and Starcy [Mitchell Starc] which would maybe be a light bowl the day before. Now might be a bit different. I've got to probably prove myself and have at least one bowl. Every Test match is always a slightly different prep. I'm not too bothered. Hopefully, I pass the fitness test and I'm good to go."
Australia's bowlers closed the Perth Test out with ease thanks to six wickets from Nathan Lyon. Steven Smith captained the side while Cummins was absent for the first 36 overs of the fourth innings on the fourth afternoon and will take the reins in Adelaide should Cummins not be able to play, just as he did in the last Test match during last summer's Ashes after Cummins was ruled out on the first morning of the match due to Covid-19.
Cummins did concede that the captaincy added a different weight to his decision as to whether he would push himself to play.
"I think it does add a bit," he said. "We've got five Tests and I want to make sure I'm available for all five. It's always like that. But a lot of the Test matches you leave with absolutely nothing left in the tank."

Alex Malcolm is an Associate Editor at ESPNcricinfo