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Sunday, June 23, 2024

Cummins confirms Australia line-up as Warner faces final Baggy Green challenge


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Sydney: Australian men’s captain Pat Cummins has revealed the make-up of his side for the Sydney Test against Pakistan, beginning on Wednesday.

The skipper confirmed the XI is unchanged after their victory in the Boxing Day Test, aiming for 12 World Test Championship points and a 3-0 clean sweep over their adversaries, who showed glimpses of upsetting the hosts in Melbourne.

The Sydney Test is a farewell for Australian opener David Warner, who departs as Australia’s fifth-highest run-scorer in the format. Of his 8695 runs at 44.58 in Test cricket, the 37-year-old has compiled 793 runs at 49.56 at his home venue, making four centuries.

Having announced his ODI retirement on Monday, Australia’s departing opener has also made a public plea on Tuesday via Instagram following the misplacement of his Baggy Green caps, purportedly taken while in transit from Melbourne to Sydney for the Test match, an ICC report said.

“Unfortunately, someone has taken my backpack out of my actual luggage, which had my backpack and my girls’ presents in there, inside this backpack was my Baggy Greens,” Warner stated in his video post.

“It’s sentimental to me, it’s something I would love to have back in my hands walking out there come this week,” he said.

While a lengthy session in the nets for fringe Australian all-rounder Cameron Green hinted at a possible return, Australia have opted against tinkering from a winning formula on their path to defending their World Test Championship crown.

Captain Cummins believes Australia’s Test schedule, which includes breaks between their two home series with Pakistan and West Indies, as well as their trip to New Zealand, means there is adequate time for the fast bowlers to play every match.

“Normally each summer there’s something that pops up. But all three of us (Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood) are really fresh,” he said.

“Even the way this summer is spread out a bit more, there’s two Tests on, then a bit of a gap; then two Tests, then a bit of a gap; then New Zealand,” Cummins said.

“We’ll give it a chance. It’s all gone pretty smoothly so far,” he added.

Australia XI to take on Pakistan at the SCG: Pat Cummins (c) David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Mitch Marsh, Alex Carey, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood.

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