Smith to lead Australia in final test, Cummins stays home

Smith to lead Australia in final test, Cummins stays home
Smith to lead Australia in final test, Cummins stays home

Australia have confirmed that Steve Smith will once again captain the Test team in their closing game of the Border Gavaskar Trophy series in Ahmedabad.

Pat Cummins, who left the tour after the second test in Delhi last month, will remain in Sydney where his mother Maria has breast cancer and is in hospice care.

Smith, who insisted his time as Australia’s full-time captain was over, completed the third Test with distinction in Indore to lead the visitors to a rare victory in India, keeping their hopes of leveling up the series in Ahmedabad this week. .

No call has yet been made on Cummins’ availability for the three-game ODI series following Testing, with the speedy bowler also named 50 plus captain last year.

But Jhye Richardson, who suffered a recurrence of a left hamstring injury while playing club cricket at the weekend, was left out of the matchdays and replaced by Nathan Ellis in the squad.

Richardson has been injury-plagued of late, having missed the back-end at recent KFC BBL due to this latest hamstring issue. He will now also miss Tuesday’s Marsh One-Day Cup final against South Australia.

Smith, while emphasizing that he was not yet coveting the permanent position, said he enjoyed being captain at Indore.

His field placements and use of the team’s three spinners were shrewd, while bolstering the validity of the team’s batting plans for the premier midtest.

“My time is up. It’s Pat’s team now,” Smith told reporters after the nine-wicket win. “I’ve obviously been able to stay up this week, obviously in difficult circumstances with Patty coming home. Our thoughts are always with him at home.

“But India is a part of the world that I love to be captain of…it’s probably my favorite place in the world to be captain.

“Every ball is an event and so can dictate what happens after, what I really like and being ahead of the game.

“So I thought I did well this week and it was a lot of fun.”

It’s unclear who would lead the one-day team in Cummins’ absence if he misses that series as well.

Josh Hazlewood replaced skipper when his pace partner missed an ODI in the England Series last summer, but he will not feature in the India campaign with an Achilles tendon injury.

Smith and Alex Carey are the other members of the team who have already done so. The same goes for David Warner, but he is still banned from holding an official leadership position.

Main image credit: BCCI/Sportzpics

Border-Gavaskar Qantas Tour of India 2023

February 9-13: India won by one end and 132 runs

February 17-21: India won by six wickets

March 1-5: Australia won by nine wickets

March 9-13: Fourth Test, Ahmedabad, 3:00 p.m. AEDT

All matches broadcast live and exclusive on Fox Cricket and Kayo Sports

Australia team: Pat Cummins (c), Scott Boland, Alex Carey, Cameron Green, Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Matt Kuhnemann, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Lance Morris, Todd Murphy, Matthew Renshaw, Steve Smith (c) , Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson

India team: Rohit Sharma (c), KL Rahul (vc), Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KS Bharat, Ishan Kishan, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Umesh Yadav , Suryakumar Yadav, Jaydev Unadkat

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. Smith will lead Australia test test final Cummins rest house

. Smith lead Australia final test Cummins stays home

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