Cummings of age: bowler hopes injuries are in the past

Australia's Pat Cummins celebrates a wicket in 2015.
Australia's Pat Cummins celebrates a wicket in 2015. Tim Ireland

CRICKET: While some have speculated he is a possible bolter for the three-Test series against Pakistan or next year's tour of India, Pat Cummins has only one real target - next year's Ashes.

The injury-prone 23-year-old is set for a much-awaited return to international cricket in the first game of the three-match Chappell-Hadlee series at the SCG tomorrow.

If he gets a spot against the Kiwis, it will be his first game for his country in 15 months after a number of injury problems.

While he was happy to be back in the one-day international arena, Cummins said his return to the Test stage might have to wait a bit longer.

"Like any cricketer, World Cups and Ashes are what you look forward to,” Cummins said.

"The Ashes next summer is a massive goal.

"At the moment it's key for me to get back in the side and assert myself in the ODI side and play a full summer, and then after that I want to get back and play some first-class cricket with an eye on the Ashes side.”

After making an immediate impact as an 18-year-old with a seven-wicket man-of-the-match debut display in South Africa in 2011, Cummins has not played a five-day game since.

He has also managed only 18 ODIs in that time, taking 33 wickets, but now looks set for a place against the Kiwis in a top-quality pace attack featuring two other bowlers who have had their share of injuries - Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood.

Cummins is hoping his injury woes are now behind him.

"We were playing a game here (at the SCG) a couple of years ago and Josh Hazlewood had his 25th birthday and the physio said to him 'happy bone-healing day',” he said.

"I don't think it's the magic number but I think it's the trend.

"Obviously Starcy and Hazlewood have played heaps since they were 24 or 23. I don't think there's a magic number but hopefully the older I get, the stronger I am.”

Meanwhile, coach Darren Lehmann has told Glenn Maxwell to get some runs if he wants to be considered as a Test player.

Maxwell was frustrated being made to bat below Victorian wicketkeeper and captain Matthew Wade in the Sheffield Shield, but Lehmann said: "You need to make a hundred.

"Are you going to pick a bloke that hasn't made 100 for two years?”

Topics:  australian cricket team chappell hadlee trophy glenn maxwell odi pat cummins

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