If Pat Cummins is fine, feeling good and still mentally focused, I don't like having rest just for the sake of it: Glenn McGrath

McGrath has backed Cummins to play the entire Ashes 2023.

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Pat Cummins WTC.
Pat Cummins WTC. (Photo Source : Gettyimages)

Australian skipper Pat Cummins has been performing exceptionally well in the current Ashes Series. While everyone is aware of the paceman's abilities with the ball, who has taken 15 wickets in the series, one less than Stuart Broad, who is now topping the table with 15 wickets, Australia won the first Test because of Cummins' unbeaten 44 as he made a great partnership with Nathon Lyon for the ninth wicket.

Drawing from his own experience, former Australian legend Glenn McGrath believes that Cummins has what it takes to continue playing in the remaining two Ashes Tests and replicate his performance as a consistently reliable pacer throughout the entire series. McGrath himself played all the matches during the grueling six-match Ashes affair in 1997, finishing as the leading wicket-taker with an impressive haul of 36 scalps, helping Australia secure the urn with a 3-2 scoreline.

Australian team has skillfully managed their pacers, rotating the likes of Mitchell Starc, Scott Boland, and Josh Hazlewood to ensure optimal performance. However, as the captain, Cummins has had to maintain a constant presence on the field, with the competitive nature of the series leaving little room for respite. 

McGrath argues that as long as Cummins feels fit, confident, and remains mentally focused, there is no need for him to consider resting himself merely for the sake of it. He emphasized the importance of the survival of the fittest mentality, pointing to the enduring success of English veterans James Anderson and Stuart Broad, who have played a staggering 165 and 181 Test matches, respectively.

"If he's fine, feeling good, enjoying it, switched on, and still mentally focused, I don't like having a rest for the sake of having a rest. I know it's a different mindset these days – it’s not about the XI, it's about the squad, and the nature of the beast is we (fast bowlers) put a lot of stress on our bodies. But I do believe in survival of the fittest," said McGrath as quoted by cricket.com.au.

I'm a fan of giving it everything: Glenn McGrath

Cummins came to England for the Ashes with no workload behind him as he did not participate in the majority of matches against India in BGT and he was not a part of the recently concluded IPL as well. McGrath commends Cummins' work ethic, acknowledging that his action and higher bowling speed place additional stress on his body.

Being the team captain, he also carries an extra responsibility to play in every game, but McGrath believes that Cummins is up to the challenge. "I'm a fan of giving it everything, maintaining yourself, and if you get injured, someone else gets an opportunity. That keeps you on edge every game, performing at your best," says McGrath, emphasizing the importance of consistency and dedication.

As there is a long break between the third and fourth Tests, all the bowlers will have sufficient time to recover and be ready for the fourth Test. The fourth Test is scheduled to start on July 19 in Manchester as Australia is leading the series 2-1 right now.

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