Sydney: Australia speedster Pat Cummins expectedly considers Virat Kohli the “big” wicket he would target in the upcoming series against India and said that keeping the visiting captain quiet would be crucial to the home team’s chances.
The Indian cricket team is currently in Australia for a full series that includes three ODIs and as many T20 Internationals followed by a four-Test rubber. The tour will start with the ODIs here on November 27.
“I think every side has that one or two batters and they are the big wickets. Most teams have their captain — Joe Root for England, Kane Williamson for New Zealand. You feel like if you get their wickets that goes a long way in winning the game,” Cummins told ‘Fox Cricket’.
“He (Kohli) is always a big one. You commentators talk about him non-stop, so hopefully, we can keep him quiet,” he added.
Cummins, who has been named in both the white and red-ball squads as vice-captain, is one of the 11 Australian players currently quarantining here after returning from the UAE where he played for Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL.
Their quarantine period will end on the eve of the opening ODI against India at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
“It’s good to be back here in Sydney. Obviously, we are locked down but we are let out for couple of hours a day.
“We’ve been in the middle of it (cricket in bio-secure bubbles) for three or four months now so we’re starting to get used to it,” he said.
“But it will be weird — we get out Thursday night and then we will go and join the boys at a hotel but there’s a good chance we won’t see them until we literally turn up to the SCG on Friday.”
Cummins said Australia is well prepared to give India a tough fight in the series.
“It’s going to be huge. Obviously, we’re back here on home soil. other than spending a lot of times in hotels and bubbles feel like our preparation has actually been really good.
“We went over to the UK and had a good tour there. Most of the boys here have been playing 14 T20 matches in the last few weeks and the other guys coming in will be playing shrewd cricket. So, it feels like we are all firing up and got a lot of stuff behind us,” he said.
The imposing pacer said that over the last couple of years, he has developed as a bowler.
“I was probably a bit quicker a few years ago but I feel like in the last couple of years I got better, learning different tempos within the game and also when I am bowling. I feel I got a bit more control on swing and seam,” Cummins said.
“Whatever conditions we come up with, I have got a couple of tools I can go to.”
Tickets sold out
Melbourne: Tickets for five of the upcoming six limited-overs fixtures between Australia and India beginning next week, have been sold out in less than a day after being released, Cricket Australia informed on Friday.
The limited-overs series will begin with the three ODIs from November 27. Limited tickets to the first ODI at the SCG, however, remain with approximately 1,900 public seats left.
Tickets for the four matches at the Sydney Cricket and two at Canberra’s Manuka Oval went on sale to the general public on Friday morning and by midday the only seats up for grabs were for the first ODI at the SCG.
It should be noted that both SCG and Manuka Oval will be at 50 per cent capacity for the series due to restrictions put in place amid Covid-19 pandemic.
“The second and third ODIs at the SCG and Manuka Oval respectively have been exhausted while the Manuka Oval T20I and two SCG T20Is are sold out,” Cricket Australia said in a release.
“Both the SCG and Manuka Oval will be at 50 per cent capacity for series, with fans voting with their feet after ticket prices were frozen from the last time India came to Australia in 2018/19,” it added.
Following the limited-overs leg, the two teams will contest in the much-anticipated four-Test series beginning December 17 at the Adelaide Oval.
Lockdown will improve chances of hosting 1st Test
Adelaide: The six-day lockdown in South Australia to contain Covid-19 cases has improved Adelaide’s chances of remaining the venue of the first Day/Night Test between India and Australia from December 17 even though the situation remains fluid, the state’s top medical officer has said.
South Australia has closed its borders after a sudden surge in COVID-19 positive cases, which stand at an overall 551 right now, and cricketers, including Test skipper Tim Paine, have been airlifted to New South Wales.
South Australia’s chief public health officer Nicola Spurrier, during a press conference, admitted that there are no guarantees.
“I can’t tell you exactly…I don’t have a crystal ball,” Spurrier told reporters during a media conference.
“But what we are doing now is putting us in the best position possible to be able to have that cricket match,” she said with a note of positivity.
A lockdown will help get back to normal life including having a cricket match of great significance.
“The reason we are doing what we are doing, which is pretty drastic…is because we want to get back to the state of having just a few restrictions and to be able to do things like have the cricket.”
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