Tue. Jul 5th, 2022

Pat Cummins nurtured a lot of anger and nowhere to lead it as he isolated himself on his couch and watched the second Ashes Test.

The Australian Test captain was a dramatic withdrawal from the team on the morning of the Adelaide match, ruled out under South Australian COVID-19 rules because he was considered a close contact.

Cummins had gone out to dinner at a steakhouse in Adelaide with a friend the night before, and a patron at the next table was identified as a positive case.

So instead of leading his team, Cummins was forced into isolation and eventually flew home to Sydney on a private jet.

Cummins is back with the team and talked about his saga Christmas Day, on the eve of the Boxing Day Ashes Test.

“I [was] really angry – but I do not know who on, “he said to MCG training.

“There was no one to blame.

“Once it became clear that state rules, follow them.”

Cummins left the restaurant as soon as he heard about the positive case and initially thought a negative test for him would be the end of it.

But it soon became clear that this was not the case.

“We knew it could show up at some point in this series. I did not think – or hope – it would be me,” he said.

“You abide by the protocols, but there [was] almost no COVID nearby so I did not take it with me at all until the guy showed up next to me and said he was positive.

Lucky escape for Starc and Lyon

It could have been even worse where teammates Mitch Starc and Nathan Lyon ate outside at the same restaurant.

They were supposed to sit with Cummins, but he had not checked his phone for 40 minutes, so they lost patience and ate separately.

Had Cummins checked his phone earlier, it could have been all three of them out of the test.

“They went into anger – they kicked a stink up and sat down behind,” he said of Lyon and Starc.

“It’s just one player, it’s a little bigger news because it’s COVID and the captain, but it’s not the end of the world, it’s not a huge change.”

It was the first time Cummins had missed a home test in about five years, and initially he thought he would make it.

“But it was good. It was a different perspective.”



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