Australia captain Pat Cummins will miss the third Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy against India, which is scheduled to begin in Indore from March 1. Cummins, who flew home to Sydney following Australia’s defeat in the second Test due to his mother’s illness, was expected to return to India for the third Test beginning Wednesday. However, the 29-year-old has confirmed that he would not be available for the Indore Test due to his mother’s illness. In his absence, Steve Smith is expected to lead the series.
“I have decided against returning to India at this time. I feel I am best being here with my family,” Cummins was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.
“I appreciate the overwhelming support I have received from Cricket Australia and my teammates. Thanks for your understanding,” he added.
With a nine-day break between Tests following the three-day finish in Delhi, it was expected that Cummins would rejoin the team ahead of the third Test.
Smith, on the other hand, spent four days in Dubai with his wife Dani following the second Test before re-joining the Australia squad in Delhi on Thursday evening.
He might lead Australia for the third time since his reinstatement as vice-captain in late 2021 when Cummins took over leadership from Tim Paine.
Australia trail India 0-2 in the four-match series, following crushing defeats in Nagpur and Delhi, respectively.
The 33-year-old was the captain when Australia last toured India in 2017. The visitors had lost the series 2-1.
Star pacer Mitchell Starc, who missed the first two Tests, could be a direct replacement for Cummins in Indore.