ENG vs AUS: Tough one to get your head around, says Cummins after second ODI defeat

Australia appeared to be cruising as it reached 144 thanks to captain Aaron Finch (73) and Marnus Labuschagne (48) before capitulating to 207 all out.

Australia's Pat Cummins is clean bowled by England's Sam Curran.   -  REUTERS

Australia pacer Pat Cummins says the 24-run loss to England in the second ODI in Manchester was “tough one to get your head around” with his team letting the host off the hook twice in the game.

From 149 for eight, England went on to make 231 for nine on a surface where runs were hard to come by. Australia then made a good start before a dramatic collapse saw it slip from 144 for two to 207 all-out. The three-match series is now level at 1-1.

“I’ll get my head around that tomorrow [Monday] and have a bit of a look at the footage. On that wicket, for 40 overs it felt like a good length was the hardest to hit, and suddenly they started hitting them quite nicely,” said Cummins after the game on Sunday.

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“We’ll have a review. If we’d kept them down - those last 10 (overs) went for 80-odd, I think - we’re suddenly only chasing 200, and it’s a different game.

“It’s a tough one to get your head around. I thought we bowled really well and then let them off the hook in the last 10 overs... we gave them an extra 40 or 50 runs.”

Thinking differently

The slow nature of the wicket helped the spinners and Cummins said his team will have to improve its game on slow wickets, something it will encounter in the 2023 World Cup in India.

“Something we always talk about in tournament play and World Cups is that towards the back end, you are likely to get these kinds of wickets where spinners (will play a role) and you’re not getting 350 that you might get at the start of the tournament,” he said.

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“On a really good wicket, in your death bowling, you go to yorkers or slower balls or bouncers. Here it’s tossing up what’s the hardest ball to hit - is it a yorker or maybe it’s top of the stumps?

“Maybe you can keep the fields in for longer, the spinners might have more of an impact. I really enjoy it. It makes you think differently and try and solve problems,” he said.

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