Promoted Cummins details captaincy mantra | Ralph Lauren

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Pat Cummins will seek to replicate Steve Waugh’s simplicity and Ricky Ponting’s passion during his captaincy apprenticeship at NSW.

Cummins, now serving as Australia’s sole vice-captain, has long been earmarked as a potential successor to Test skipper Tim Paine and white-ball captain Aaron Finch.

The major question remains whether a fast bowler could juggle the pressure-laden burden of leading the national side.

Cummins hopes he will go a long way to finding the answer in coming weeks, having been installed as captain of the Blues’ one-day side.

It will be the 27-year-old’s first time in charge of a team since under-16s, barring a couple of intra-squad games.

Cummins, whose first game as skipper will be Monday’s clash with Victoria at North Sydney Oval, has vowed to lean on Steve Smith and other experienced teammates.

The words of legendary Test captains Waugh and Ponting, who both oversaw golden eras of Australian cricket, will also be on the superstar’s mind.

“Steve Waugh was in England for the (2019) Ashes. I loved how simple he kept things,” Cummins said.

“We all love cricket, talk cricket, and really quickly you try to get into the minutiae. Whereas he’d take a step back, just keep it simple.

“Ricky Ponting, his love of the game (stands out) … Painey (Tim Paine), I love how he manages people.

“Steve Smith is always thinking about the game. Even Clarkey (Michael Clarke), I felt like a million bucks when he gave me the ball in my debut.

“You pick little bits up from each captain. The main thing for me is you want to have great relationships, have a bit of fun and always try to think of things.”

Cricket Australia has urged every state to give more leadership experience to potential future national captains.

Former Test wicketkeeper Peter Nevill will remain skipper of the Blues’ Sheffield Shield team, but Cricket NSW was keen to give Cummins a chance to shine.

Cummins suggested he and national selectors will soon have a better idea of whether he could become the first fast bowler since 1956 to captain Australia’s Test side.

“Keen to see if I’m any good or I’m hopeless, if I enjoy it,” he said.

“Not looking too much further ahead … Painey is still here and hopefully has got a few more summers in him.

“Like batting and bowling, captaincy can be a skill. You have to practice, have to try to find your own methods. The best way is giving it a crack.”

Cummins will likely be stationed at mid-off as he seeks to control the tempo and fielders, and braces for some challenges.

“The obvious one as a fast bowler is if it’s a really hot day, you’re trying to bowl flat out all day,” he said.

“Just making sure the game doesn’t meander on in those moments when you’re trying to catch your breath.”


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