Every game now becomes almost like a final: Pat Cummins | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: Compelled to approach each game as if it were a final match, Australia captain Pat Cummins expressed his team’s determination to excel against opponents they have had success with in recent times.
Australia suffered a resounding defeat in their opening World Cup match against host India and faced another setback with a 134-run loss to South Africa on Thursday.
The Australian team currently finds themselves in a challenging position, needing to secure victories in at least six of their remaining seven matches to secure a spot in the semifinals. Nevertheless, Cummins remains composed and is not rushing to make drastic decisions just yet.
“Looking back at 2019, India and South Africa were the two teams that we lost to in the round games there. In the last year, they’re kind of the two teams that we’ve had the most trouble against.
“So, the opportunity now is we’ve got some teams we haven’t played for a while that we’ve had a lot of success against and be really confident when we go out there,” Cummins said on the eve of the match against Sri Lanka here.
Australia had entered the tournament on the back of away ODI series losses to India and South Africa.
“Not an ideal start at all. Everyone’s desperate to turn it around. We’re obviously 0-2, so we’ve got to start winning and start winning quick. Every game now becomes almost like a final. You’ve got to win just about all of them.”
Australia is the most successful side in the history of the tournament but the current team has been guilty of churning up lacklustre performances.
“No doubt we haven’t been up to the standard that we like to hold. We’ve been off the mark and been outplayed both games. When we’re at our best, we’re putting big runs on the board. We’re putting the pressure back into the opposition.
“Us bowlers are taking wickets through the middle. So, we haven’t been able to pull any of that together so far. So yeah, we know what makes us a really good team.
“Again, it wasn’t that long ago. We’re number one in the world. So, we don’t have to look back too far to work out when we’re playing our best,” Cummins added.
The Australian team is packed with all-rounders like Mitchell Marsh, Marcus Stoinis and Glenn Maxwell.
With Ashton Agar being ruled out due to an injury, Maxwell has had to share spin duties with Adam Zampa, the only frontline spinner in the side.
Asked if it is the lack of role clarity that is hurting the team, Cummins said “No, I don’t think so”.
“The good thing and the luxury we have with the all-rounders is they all make it into the team on the back of their primary skill, which for most of them is batting.
“And it’s fortunate we’ve got guys like Stoinis and Maxwell and Marsh that can provide overs and do it really well.
“There’s certainly sometimes – some teams I’ve played in where you’ve got to try and fit in all-rounders that might not make the top seven batters or the top four bowlers, but we’re in a really good place,” he added.
(With PTI Inputs)

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