Babar Azam explains why Pat Cummins is ‘toughest to face’

The Australian skipper is one of the best fast bowlers in the world

By Web Desk
May 13, 2024
Babar Azam (R) having a moment with Australia's Pat Cummins. — AFP

Pakistan’s white-ball captain Babar Azam has explained why Australia’s Pat Cummins is one of the toughest bowlers to face as the World Cup-winning captain has been at the top of his game for many years.

Azam was talking to the former chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on a local news channel where he was asked how he ranks some of the bowlers in order.

“You have to rate these bowlers according to the difficulty. Jasprit Bumrah, Mitchell Starc, Mark Wood and Pat Cummins,” Raja asked.

Babar ranked Cummins at first, Bumrah second, Wood third and Starc at the last. He then went on to explain why the right-arm Australian pacer is the toughest bowler he has faced as he is someone who traps the batter.

“The way he has, over the years, improved [himself], he will not give you a loose ball. He knows how I can take the wicket of a certain batter by bowling at a certain position. He traps you. He gives you a tough time. He challenges your tempering and technique to the fullest,” Azam said.

The 29-year-old then added that if Cummins bowls a loose bowl, then he is doing it intentionally.

"If he does a loose bowl, then I think that he does that intentionally. That is why I rate him highly because he has the ability to take a wicket. He never bowls with a consistent pace, he would normally bowl at 130-135 [kph] and then suddenly bowl you out at 145," Azam added.

"So he has that ability to vary his pace. One thing about him is that he will always bowl at hard length if he is bowling at full length, then it is intentional."

Remember, Cummins guided Australia to their record-extending sixth World Cup in November 2023 by beating India in the final at Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad.