Pat Cummins relaunches international career in T20 series
Young Australian paceman Pat Cummins gets a chance to relaunch his injury-blighted international career in Wednesday`s Twenty20 series opener against South Africa in Adelaide.
Cummins, 21, will play his first international for more than two years as fifth-ranked Australia take on the third-rated Proteas in the first of three T20 matches.
The New South Wales fast bowler has missed three consecutive Australian summers with lower back stress fractures, but Australia skipper Aaron Finch expects Cummins to issue a reminder of his talents.
"When you have got a guy as skilful as Pat in your squad, it adds a real lot of depth," Finch told reporters.
"He can bat, bowl, is brilliant in the field. So for Australian cricket to have him back is a real asset. He is someone who can swing the ball, and in Twenty20 it`s about taking wickets and he`s a definite wicket-taker.
"When you have that asset, it just gives you so much at the top of the order with the ball. If you can knock over good players early in this format, it goes a long way to winning."
South Africa captain J.P. Duminy said the Proteas were wary of Cummins, who took seven wickets and scored the winning runs in his sole Test match against South Africa three years ago.
"I was pretty impressed with what I came up against there," Duminy said of Cummins.
"We have seen some good spurts from him over different formats and obviously he`s another guy that has been hindered by injury.
"I`m sure he`s on the way back in terms of bowling confidence. Definitely a key player for them and a player that we definitely are wary of."
Finch said the T20 series, ahead of five one-dayers against the South Africans, was an ideal platform for the likes of Cummins to gain early-season momentum.
"From a personal point of view, if you start off the series well it gives you a lot of confidence ... it probably takes a little bit of pressure off," Finch said.
"As soon as you`re chasing your tail in the shortest format especially and you feel under pressure ... it`s a pretty tough game.
"You don`t quite play as naturally and free. So if you can get runs or wickets in the first couple of games, that just opens you up with natural flair and freedom."