Former Australia pace icon Brett Lee wants the No1 ranked Pat Cummins to take the new-ball for Australia when they take on Pakistan in the upcoming two-Test series on home soil.
26-year-old Cummins had to endure multiple injury nightmares at the start of his international career but the fast bowler has been able to firmly establish himself as the one of the most consistent in the business, with his displays over the last three years.
While he has topped the wicket-taking charts in the two most recent Ashes series against England, Cummins has had to make do as Australia’s first-change pacer, particularly in home Tests.
Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood have shared the new-ball duties between them in the past two Australian summers and Lee wants that trend to change against Pakistan.
“Pat Cummins has to get the new ball, he must get the new ball,” the former pace ace told the Australian Associated Press (AAP) in a recent interview.
“Don’t bowl him first-change. Sure, he can do it. But don’t waste him.
“I don’t know if he’s been unfairly targeted as a guy who can play a number of roles. That’s been to his detriment I think.
“Yes, we’ve got guys like Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc who can also bowl with the new ball.
“But I think you’ve got to pick who you believe is the best chance of taking a wicket. Worry about your first change when you have them three or four down.”
Cummins is the current No1 ranked Test bowler in the world by some distance with a rating of 908 points. He is followed by South Africa’s Kagiso Rabada (839) and Windies skipper Jason Holder (814).
Australia begin their two-match series on November 21 with the first Test taking place at the Gabba in Brisbane.
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