Sydney, Aug 24 (IANS) Australia’s Test skipper Pat Cummins believes that the after-effect of the stumping of England wicketkeeper-batter Jonny Bairstow by Alex Carey during the Lord’s Test in the 2023 Ashes series made him like the fact that a lot of people got involved with the sport.
On day five’s play in the second Ashes Test at Lord’s, Bairstow was on 10 in the 52nd over when he ducked under a bouncer from Cameron Green and inadvertently walked out of his crease.
Carey immediately directed an underarm throw after catching the delivery, and jumped in joy after firing his throw at the stumps. On-field umpires Ahsan Raza and Chris Gaffaney sent the decision upstairs, where TV umpire Marais Erasmus confirmed Bairstow’s dismissal.
The dismissal drew a furious reaction from the fans, who started to chant “same old Aussies, always cheating”, and booed the visitors for the rest of the day, with some Australian players also facing verbal abuse from MCC members in long room during lunch interval.
“I think the great thing was how many people were speaking about cricket. It was the middle of winter [in Australia] and cricket was the main sport for a couple of months. So personally, I loved how much people were focusing on Test cricket and loving the contest each day. And also the old rivalry between us and them, every Ashes series seems to drop something,” said Cummins on Channel Seven’s Sunrise show.
Talking about his team-mates Usman Khawaja and David Warner facing some verbal vitriol from the MCC members, Cummins said, “It certainly was a fair old tantrum. I haven’t experienced anything like that before … but I will say across my career, I’ve seen that type of dismissal at least 20 times, and it is always out.”
“Davey (David Warner) and Ussie (Usman Khawaja) went back at a few of the members following some comments, it was getting pretty heated. I got the gossip from the other guys, then we all took a deep breath and looked to stay composed. We had a break, and then reset.”
England came back strongly from 2-0 down to draw the series 2-2. Though Australia did not win the Ashes, they managed to retain the urn. “Our aim was to retain the Ashes, which we did, but even now I look back and some moments which if they went our way could have seen a series win as opposed to a draw.”
“We also retained the urn over there in 2019, so I am very proud of what we have achieved. Winning away from home is tough,” added Cummins, who is also Australia’s ODI captain.
The right-arm pacer, who isn’t a part of Australia’s white-ball tour of South Africa, said he is “another couple of weeks” away from being fit after breaking his left wrist in the final Ashes Test at The Oval. With the Men’s ODI World Cup less than 50 days away, Cummins is hopeful of Mitchell Marsh doing a great job as stand-in captain in South Africa.
“He’ll be great. He’s done a bit of vice-captaincy before but he’s always a leader around the group. He’s great fun, especially in T20 and one-day cricket – he takes the game on. I think that’s what you need in that format so he’s going to do a terrific job.”