Ian Healy, former wicketkeeper of Australian team, has pointed out that it’s time for Australian captain Pat Cummins to transfer the responsibility to another player. The harsh call on stepping down from the test captaincy came when Pat Cummins is going through an unfortunate event as his mother is seriously ill.
Steve Smith is set to lead the Australian team in the third test match after Cummins flew back home and yesterday said in a message, “I have decided against returning to India at this time as my mother is ill and in palliative care,” Cummins said. “I feel I am best being here with my family.”
“I appreciate the overwhelming support I have received from Cricket Australia and my teammates. Thanks for your understanding.”
Pat Cummins was assigned the role of captaincy before 2021-22 Ashes after then captain Tim Paine was found involved in a sexting scandal. He step down and at the time Cummins seemed best choice the coveted role. However, Healy believes that if Pat Cummins wants to focus on his bowling and think about longevity of his career, he should step down from the captaincy.
During Border Gavaskar Trophy, Cummins’ captaincy has been under radar of many ex Australian players including Mark Waugh and Michael Clarke. Specially, his field placements and bowling changes were speculated for good reasons. Now, Iam Healy has echoed the ongoing voice with a more clear message that Cummins’ bowling with suffer the burden of his captaincy.
“I don’t want him carrying the burden of so much captaincy for too long, want him to finish (as just a bowler),” Healy said.
“The captaincy creates a burnout and four to five years is a long time as a captain. He’s done a few years already, now he’s adding (short-form captaincy) to his thought processes at a time when he’s dealing with some sort of family illness back home. So yeah, I would like to see him finish his career as a tearaway fast bowler and someone else with the captaincy burden.”
There is no fit name in the current team to lead the entire team. Steve Smith is uncertain about his cricketing career who a few months ago said that he is taking a series at a time. Healy believes that Travis Head is the most able player in the current squad who can lead the team.
“I think Travis Head is quite capable. He’s led South Australia since he was a 21-year-old, he’s quite capable and has got a lot of experience,” said Healy.
“He’s the main one that stands out to me. The likes of Glenn Maxwell might be able to do parts of it (in the short form), but as far as longer-term captaincy prospects other than Travis Head, I can’t think (of any).”