In an important development ahead of the Men’s Ashes series 2021-22, Cricket Australia (CA) on Friday confirmed the appointment of ace pacer Pat Cummins as the leader of Australia’s Men’s Test team. He will replace Tim Paine from the role.
Cummins has been appointed Australian 47th Men’s Test captain and is the only pacer to be given a full-time leadership role. Earlier, fast bowler Ray Lindwall in 1956 led the Australian Test side in a match, but that was just a stand-in role in absence of the regular skipper.
CA has also brought back Steve Smith to the leadership role as he will be Pat Cummins deputy in the longest format.
The development came a week after Tim Paine, then Australian Test skipper stepped down from his role following the disclosure of the sexting scandal he was a part of during 2017.
It is noteworthy, prior to Tim Paine, Steve Smith was the Australian Test skipper, however, he was sacked from the role after the famous ball-tampering incident in Cape Town. He lost his captaincy and was subsequently banned for 2 years from international cricket.
“I am honored to accept this role ahead of what will be a massive Ashes summer,” Cummins said in a statement. “I hope I can provide the same leadership Tim (Paine) has given the group in the past few years.”
“Pat is an outstanding player and leader,” Cricket Australia chief executive Nick Hockley said. ”He has earned enormous respect from his teammates and from all corners of the game for his attitude and achievements, both on and off the field.`”
The Ashes 2021-22 between Australia and England is slated to begin on 8th December 2021 in Brisbane.
Amidst all this, Tim Paine has announced his indefinite mental health break from international cricket. Cricket Tasmania in a statement on Friday said Tim Paine will quit all forms of cricket for the “foreseeable future.”
There were long-standing deliberations going on amongst the Cricket Australia (CA) officials whether Tim should participate in the opening Ashes test match against England in Brisbane or now, however, his decision to take a break has put an abrupt suspension to the debate.
“Following discussions over the last 24 hours, Tim Paine has advised Cricket Tasmania that he will be taking a leave of absence from all forms of cricket for the foreseeable future,” it said in a statement.