With just 13 members available out of the 15-man squad for their World Cup match against England, Australian captain Pat Cummins on Friday said teams should be allowed to travel with larger squads considering the tournament’s duration. Looking to qualify for the semifinals, Australia will miss the services of star players Glenn Maxwell and Mitchell Marsh in Saturday’s contest against their traditional rivals. Maxwell suffered a freak injury during a game of golf while Marsh has returned home for personal reasons, and no definite timeline is marked for his return to action. Maxwell, however, is likely to regain full fitness soon.
“Yeah, to be honest,” Cummins said when asked if he is in favour of bringing in regulations allowing teams to pick larger squads for long tournaments like the World Cup.
Currently all teams can have just 15 member squads.
“I mean, it’s a two-month tournament. You wouldn’t want to be in a position where, say, somewhere like a team like New Zealand have had some injuries and luckily, they’ve been able to hold someone like Kane in the squad but if suddenly you had to rule him out – that wouldn’t be good for a cricket or a World Cup.
“It’s not like you can poach players from other countries, so I always kind of think as many players as you need, you should be able to pick from,” Cummins added.
New Zealand are the worst affected by injuries and the growing list now has five names in it, with the latest beng Matt Henry’s exit from the tournament.
Speaking about the key players missing from his team, Cummins said at the pre-match presser, “Maxi’s hopeful for the clash against Afghanistan, so he’ll just miss this one. But he’s trained well yesterday and still taking it day by day, but hoping he’ll just miss this one.
“Then Mitch we’ll wait and see – he’ll definitely come back I don’t think it’ll be a super long trip back home to Perth but yeah main thing is he’s back home and we’ll give him as much time and space as he needs.” Sean Abbott is the only member of Australia’s 15-man squad yet to feature in the tournament.
“We knew at the start of the tournament we were going to need a full squad of 15,” Cummins said.
“It’s unfortunate, but we knew over a two-month tournament, you’re going to have to chop and change a bit,” he added.
“To be honest, once the tournament started, we thought we’d have 15 available. But one-day cricket more than any other format, you have injuries, it’s high intensity, games are close together.” Seeking to make the semifinals, Cummins said he is hoping to have a full-strength squad at his disposal by the time the tournament enters the knockout stage.
“We need to obviously make the semi-finals, but hopefully this is the last hiccup where we’ve got a smaller squad to pick from and then once we get closer, we’ve got a full squad.
“I’ve got in my mind the main XI – the way that we want to play – but I’m really happy with our squad. We’ve shown throughout this tournament, we’ve been able to mix up the batting order and anyone that’s come in has stepped up and done really well,” Cummins said.
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