Australia captain Pat Cummins won’t be leading the team in fourth and the final Test against India, starting March 9 in Ahmedabad. He will remain in Sydney where his mother Maria is ill with breast cancer and is in palliative care. In Cummins’ absence, Steve Smith will captain the side in the final Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2023.
“Pat Cummins has been ruled out of the fourth Test against India in Ahmedabad to remain in Australia with his family,” Cricket Australia said in a brief statement.
“Steve Smith will captain Australia in the final Test of this series,” it added.
Cummins left the tour ahead of the third Test and was initially expected to return for the third game of the series. Since his mother is in palliative care, the Aussie captain has decided to stay in Australia. The fast bowler is also slated to lead the team in the 3-match ODI series that follows the Tests. But as stated by CA, no call has yet been made on his availability.
Our hearts go out to Pat Cummins and his family ❤️Smith to lead in Ahmedabad | @LouisDBCameron #INDvAUS https://t.co/g06zzNwieZ
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) March 6, 2023
Under Cummins’ leadership, Australia slumped to heavy defeats in the opening two Tests but bounced back spectacularly when Smith took over to win the third Test by nine wickets.
The victory was only Australia’s second Test win in India since 2004 and secured them a place in the ICC World Test Championship final in June at The Oval.
After Australia’s victory in Indore, Steve Smith said his time as the complete was dione with the end of the third Test.
“My time is done. It’s Pat’s team now," Smith told reporters after the nine-wicket win.
“I’ve obviously been able to stand in this week, obviously in tough circumstances with Patty going home. Our thoughts are still with him back home," he added.
India, who have already retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, are currently leading the series 2-1.
Meanwhile, fast bowler Jhye Richardson suffered a recurrence of a left hamstring injury over the weekend and has been ruled out of the limited-overs games, with Nathan Ellis replacing him in the squad.
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