London, June 4 (IANS) Australia captain Pat Cummins has defended the move of not playing any warm-up matches ahead of the World Test Championship final and Ashes, citing the nature of the hectic schedule, which leaves them with no time for playing practice games.
Australia adopted a no tour match policy since their tour of Pakistan last year, and is being continued for their all-important trip in England which features a WTC final against India at The Oval from June 7-11 and is quickly followed by the Ashes from June 16-July 31.
“It’s the nature of the schedule. But we feel really good. We’ve had a good prep up in Brisbane for a few days. It’s a pretty busy couple of months coming up and six Tests in two months is really hectic. You’d rather be fresh at the end of it than worn out. We’ve got a pretty experienced squad and have all played in England before, so we’ll be as ready as we’ll ever be,” Cummins was quoted as saying by The Sydney Morning Herald.
Cummins prepped for the tour of England through attending pre-season training at New South Wales’ Cricket Central since April with fellow quicks Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood before going to a pre-tour camp at the Centre of Excellence in Brisbane, followed by more preparation at Beckham, Kent’s second county ground, in England.
With Australia not playing any warm-up game has invited criticism from many, including former captain Allan Border, veteran left-handed opener David Warner feels tour matches could become ‘a waste of time’, as conditions for such games are completely different from the ones seen in a Test match.
“We’re playing so much cricket these days with so many people coming off different kinds of cricket or no cricket and getting their workloads up in their own way under supervision. I think when you’ve played a long time, another warm-up game isn’t going to get you ready,” said Cummins.
“Why wouldn’t we just have a four-day session against our bowlers, and they can bowl the whole day and I can bat against the best bowlers in the world. It just makes sense.
From our perspective, you only need two good hit-outs then a couple of training sessions in and around that. If you have a warm-up game but you nick off, then you’re standing around for six hours,” he concluded.