Cummins upbeat about cricket comeback
Photo Source: PAA
Injury-prone paceman Pat Cummins aims to play his first Sheffield Shield cricket match in five years in his bid to add to his sole Test appearance.
Cummins 23, missed all of last summer with a stress fracture in his back, but has been cleared to play in the domestic one-day competition and expects to line up for NSW in their opening game on Friday.
He is initially targeting the shorter forms of one day and T20 for a return to international cricket.
Ultimately he wants to add to the one Test he played against South Africa in Johannesburg in 2011, when he won the man of the match award following a game-tilting six-wicket second innings haul.
Six of his teammates from that Test subsequently retired and Phil Hughes died.
He has played just eight first-class games and hasn't featured in a Shield fixture since the 2011 final, in which be bowled a mammoth 48 overs in Tasmania's first innings.
"Playing Shield is a big goal for me and I'm pretty sure I'd need to play a couple of them before I was considered for Tests, " Cummins said on Monday.
"But certainly ODI's and T20s and Big Bash and Matador Cup are probably my immediate goals."
Cummins said his body felt good after a hitout for NSW in a pre-season game and two matches for his Sydney club in which he collected five wickets.
"I've put a bit of time into getting everything moving a bit moire economically and it feels really good, " Cummins said.
He has drawn inspiration from and hopes to emulate the efforts of state pace colleagues Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc, who have each enjoyed a productive international career after suffering plenty of early injury setbacks.
"I think the things that help me is talking to someone like (former pace bowler) Brett Lee and those kind of guys who have had injuries and didn't really start their career consistently till they were 24 or 25," Cummins said.
He revealed he adopted a different approach and attitude while dealing with the latest injury.
"I think this time I've been a little bit more relaxed than I have in the past and probably a bit more comfortable taking it a little bit slower and easing into it," Cummins said.
Cummins has been active away from the cricket field and is on the verge of completing a Bachelor of Business degree.