Pat Cummins And Australia Can Deliver The Summer Of All Summers With Ashes Win

Australia are looking to win an Ashes series in England for the first time since 2001
08:00, 14 Jun 2023

While England have prepared for the upcoming Ashes by hammering Ireland, Australia have had rather bigger fish to fry. Last weekend, Pat Cummins’ men were crowned World Test Champions after beating India at The Oval after two years of exceptional cricket. 

They thumped India by 209 runs to take the title of the best Test team on the planet, but that was only part one of what could be a remarkable summer for Australian cricket. On Friday, they begin their quest to try and win their first Ashes series on English soil 2001 and after their win over Rohit Sharma’s side, Betfred have priced them at 10/11 favourites to do exactly that. 

"Whether we like it or not, Ashes tend to define eras and teams," said Cummins, well aware of the importance of the five-match series that begins at Edgbaston. He’s right. Freddie Flintoff was the cocky jewel in the crown for England in 2005, Geoffery Boycott had highs and lows at the crease in the late 1970s, while Steve Smith has dominated for the Baggy Greens in recent times. 


They are also coming off the back of one of their better Ashes performances, having won four Tests in 2021/22, and having not lost hold of the little urn since their 2015 defeat. But this is a different era for Australia, one that comes after sandpapergate and Tim Paine’s sexting scandal. 

This is Cummins’ Australia. He may be a left-field choice as captain given fast bowlers are rarely given the opportunity to lead Test teams, but he has taken to the role like a duck to water. The first fast bowler ever to captain Australia has won eight of his 14 Test matches so far, while promoting Steve Smith back to vice-captain appears to have steadied the ship across 2022. 

It helps that he has one of the most experienced Australian teams we have ever seen around him. Older heads are always on hand for him to turn to and in David Warner and Usman Khawaja he has two 36-year-old openers that he can rely on. They are backed up by Smith, while Mitchell Starc and Scott Boland have bucketloads of experience and are all in their mid-thirties. 

If Boland can carry the form he showed in the Test final, when he dismissed Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja in the same over, he will give England serious problems, while Travis Head put on a remarkable 163 with the bat alongside Smith in a partnership that essentially won the final. 

"We've played awesome cricket for the last two years and being there at the end holding the trophy feels really well deserved,” Cummins said, having tasted the first part of summer success on Sunday.

"That's great for our team and Ashes are hard to win, It's not going to be easy but if we were to win it, that is legacy-defining stuff. No doubt Test matches for us are our favourite format. It's the biggest challenge I think in every way.”

The strength and experience of the squad has allowed Cummins and Andrew McDonald to focus on creating a pathway that has led them to this summer. It’s included several big wins on home soil and some resolute performances on the road, but now they have touched down in England, it is time to win big. 

There’s been questions as to whether he is aggressive enough as a captain, especially in comparison to the bonkers Bazball England are playing - but a calm head and a steady hand could just be what gets Australia over the line. It’s time for the Cummins era to define its own legacy and deliver the summer of all summers. 

Ashes 2023 odds with Betfred*

*18+ | BeGambleAware

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