Cummins ruled out of Adelaide Test; Smith to captain

Pat Cummins, Australia’s skipper, was ruled out of the second Ashes Test here on Thursday after coming into touch with a Covid positive person. The second Test, which will be played over two days, will begin later on Thursday. In the first Test at Brisbane, Cummins led Australia to a nine-wicket victory over arch-rivals England. But, after getting into contact with a person who tested positive for the Covid-19 virus on Wednesday, he was kicked out of the second Test.

In the second Test, Australia will be led by vice-captain Steve Smith. Michael Neser will make his Test debut in Adelaide, while Travis Head has been named vice-captain. Michael Slater, a former Australian cricketer, has been arrested.

“I’m sorry I missed this Test, but I’m definitely looking forward to seeing Neser get his chance in the baggy green. He’s put in the effort and is a highly skilled player. COVID has thrown us all several curveballs over the last couple of years, which has been really aggravating. “I’ll be rooting for you!” Cummins sent out a tweet on Thursday.

According to cricket.com.au, South Australia Health has determined that Cummins is in close contact and will be needed to isolate for seven days after the Australia captain ate supper at an Adelaide restaurant where a fellow customer was diagnosed with the virus. Arrivals from interstate are required to have a PCR test upon arrival — and are needed to isolate until that test is conducted — but they are not required to isolate until they receive the result, according to current South Australian instructions. They had to segregate until they received their results last week.

Cummins was immediately isolated after learning of the incident and has subsequently undergone a PCR test, which came back negative. He’ll have to be isolated for the next seven days. Cummins did not violate any biosecurity standards, according to Cricket Australia, and it is hoped that he will be available to lead Australia in the Boxing Day Test at the MCG.

“Last night, Cummins dined in a restaurant and did not violate any bio-security norms.” Cricket Australia stated in a statement on Thursday that “he isolated as soon as he became aware of the problem and subsequently had a PCR test, which showed a negative result. Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon dined at the same restaurant as Cummins, but at a different outdoor table. They have been declared casual contacts by SA Health and are free to play (the Test),” Cricket Australia added.

With Cummins’ injury, Australia will be without two of their greatest fast bowlers, with Josh Hazlewood also missing the match due to a side ailment. Smith will lead Australia for the first time since the 2018 Cape Town Test against South Africa. Neser will become Australia’s 462nd men’s Test cricketer. Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon are now the leaders of an Australian bowling attack that includes a third-gamer (Jhye Richardson) and a debutant (Michael Neser).