australia: New captain for Australia before Indore test; Steve Smith to lead team in Pat Cummins’ absence

Australia captain Pat Cummins will remain in Sydney and miss the third Test against India so he can be with his seriously ill mother, Cricket Australia said on Friday.

Cummins flew home to Australia last Sunday immediately after the team’s second-Test defeat to India in New Delhi. Steve Smith will take over as captain for the third Test. The 29-year-old Cummins on Thursday night informed coach Andrew McDonald of his decision to remain in Australia, with the rest of the squad told at training on Friday morning.

“I’ve decided against returning to India at this time as my mother is ill and in palliative care. I feel I’m best being here with my family,” Cummins said in a statement. “I appreciate the overwhelming support I’ve received from Cricket Australia and my teammates. Thanks for your understanding.”

Cummins intends to be available for the fourth and final Test in Ahmedabad, but it is possible he will sit out the rest of the series. It’ll be the third time Smith has stepped in as Test captain since Cummins became skipper in November 2021. Smith left the Australian camp in New Delhi for a brief break to Dubai with wife Dani and arrived back in the on Thursday night.


All-rounder Cameron Green has said that he is ‘100 percent ready to go’ for the third Test after missing the first two with a fractured finger. He was in consideration for the second Test in Delhi but was ultimately ruled out on the eve of the match after suffering minor setbacks while batting in the nets.

Green’s return would be a welcome boost for the Baggy Greens as Cummins, David Warner and Josh Hazlewood flew home in recent days. “I was so, so close last game but I think probably having an extra week has helped a lot, so I’m 100 percent ready to go,” Green was quoted as saying by Fox Cricket.

Mitchell Starc is also firming up for a return in Indore. “My bowling is actually going really well, I think we probably thought the ball on the back of the finger rolling off might be painful but that’s been completely fine,” he said


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