Off The Field

Pat Cummins more of old fashioned Test captain, Ben Stokes tries to make something happen every ball: Ricky Ponting

Written by Rohit Pawar

Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting feels the current captain Pat Cummins embodies the traits of a traditional Test captain, allowing “plans to unravel,” while his English counterpart Ben Stokes constantly strives to create an impact with every delivery.

Stokes’ daring choice to declare early in the first innings of the opening Test became the subject of intense analysis. Similarly, Cummins’ limited utilization of rookie spinner Todd Murphy in the unfortunate loss at Headingley raised significant concerns and garnered considerable attention.

“I think this has been one of the most tactical series that I could remember, because of the two different styles of play, probably two contrasting styles of leadership as well,” Ponting said ‘The ICC Review’.

“Pat (Cummins) is more of an old-fashioned sort of Test match captain where he sort of lets sets fields and lets plans sort of unravel and is happy to do it over a long period of time, whereas Stokes is a bit the other way.

“He’s sort of trying to make something happen every ball and therefore sometimes plans never really have a chance to eventuate,” Ponting added.

Having been elevated to Test captain after Tim Paine’s sudden resignation ahead of the 2021 Ashes, Cummins has enjoyed a good run as the skipper.

The Australian pace spearhead began his captaincy stint winning the last Ashes series 4-0, then won against Pakistan, West Indies and South Africa. Australia also drew 1-1 with Sri Lanka away from home last year.

His only series loss came against India earlier this year before defeating the Rohit Sharma led side in the final to lift the World Test Championship mace.

“Look, Pat is still fairly young in the job. Let’s not forget that he’s only been doing it for a couple of years now and I’m sure he’s learning along the way,” Ponting said.
Australia lead the series 2-1 heading into the fourth Test starting in Manchester on Wednesday.

“I’m not going to question Pat at all. The fact that Australia are 2-1 up says he’s done a good job to me.

“There’ll always be little things in a game. When you lose, there are always little things in a game that people are happy to talk about.

About the author

Rohit Pawar

An Independent I.T. Security Expert, Geek, Blogger & Passionate Programmer.