Cummins set to be fit for ODI World Cup despite wrist fracture

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Pat Cummins is set to lead Australia on the upcoming ODI tours of South Africa and India and in the World Cup despite suffering a fractured wrist in the final Test of the Ashes series that requires a six-week recovery period.

Cummins suffered the injury to his left wrist while diving in the field during the first innings on day one of the fifth Test at the Oval on July 27. He played out the remainder of the Test match but requires a lengthy recovery. He will miss three-match T20I series in South Africa that begins on August 30 and precedes the five-match ODI series that begins on September 7.

Marnus Labuschagne is the big omission from Australia’s ODI squad for the upcoming tours and the World Cup having played in each of Australia’s last nine ODIs and 30 across the last three years.
New South Wales legspinner Tanveer Sangha and Western Australia allrounder Aaron Hardie are the new inclusions in the 18-man ODI squad. Both men are yet to make their international debut. Sangha has not played since August last year due to a stress fracture in his back but has toured New Zealand with an Australia T20 squad previously. Hardie has been a regular in Australia A squads in the last 18 months and has also been named in the T20I squad for the South Africa series.
Glenn Maxwell will miss the South Africa ODI series following the T20Is due to paternity leave but will rejoin the squad for their three-match series against India in India that starts on September 22 and runs immediately into the 50-over World Cup.

Cummins will fly to South Africa ahead of the first ODI in Bloemfontein on September 7 but given the timeframe on his left wrist it unlikely he would be available for that first match.

Marsh is one of a number of candidates who could captain the ODI side in Cummins’ absence. Steven Smith led the side during the last ODI series Australia played in March in India when Cummins was absent following the death of his mother. Hazlewood also captained Australia in a one-off ODI in Sydney against England last November while Alex Carey has also previously captained the ODI team.

Chair of selectors George Bailey sees Cummins’ injury as a positive given his heavy workload during the Ashes and was confident there were enough games for him to prepare ahead of the World Cup, with Australia’s first match on October 8.

“Pat injured his left wrist diving in the field on the first day at The Oval,” Bailey said. “He has an undisplaced fracture of his left radius which requires six weeks rehabilitation.

“We expect him to join the squad during the South African ODI Series. We view a period of enforced rest for Pat as a positive ahead of this important World Cup campaign.

“There are still a number of games he could play before the World Cup which is more than enough for him to have a strong preparation.”

Labuschagne is the only notable omission from Australia’s World Cup squad after being a regular in Australia’s ODI team over the past three years. But having made a strong start to his ODI career, including scoring a century in just his sixth match against South Africa in Potchefstroom in 2020, he has struggled to bed down his place in the middle order. Labuschagne averaged just 22.30 in his last 14 ODI innings, striking at 69.87 with only two half-centuries.

Australia will trim their 18-man squad to 15 in early September with the final 15-man squad for the World Cup to be named on September 28.

Australian ODI squad: Pat Cummins (capt), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Nathan Ellis, Cameron Green, Aaron Hardie, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Tanveer Sangha, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa

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