Cummins the sole Aussie Test vice-captain

Steve Larkin
·1-min read

Paceman Pat Cummins is a hair's breadth from the Australian Test captaincy with Travis Head removed from sharing the vice-captaincy role.

Cummins is the sole deputy to Test skipper Tim Paine this summer, with Australian selectors yet to contemplate Steve Smith returning to a leadership role.

"That discussion hasn't been had yet," chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns told reporters on Thursday.

Asked if could see Smith as captain in the future, Hohns replied: "That's difficult to say. He will obviously be, probably, a contender.

"But whether we go down that path or not depends on when that arises.

"You know, Tim Paine hasn't gone yet, put it that way.

"We will worry about that in due course."

Smith was stripped of the captaincy and banned from leading Australia for two years in March 2018 in the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa.

Cummins and Head shared the Test vice-captaincy last summer but Hohns said selectors had opted for a change in policy.

And he all but assured Head of keeping his middle-order berth for the first Test against India starting December 17 in Adelaide.

"That (vice-captaincy decision) is nothing to do with Trav's position in the side," Hohns said.

"It was simply a matter of us going back to the old formula of having one vice-captain, similar to what we did with the white-ball squad.

"It's no reflection on what Travis has done. He has done a wonderful job as a leader within the group and he will remain a leader in the group.

"It was just one of those policy decisions basically that we wanted to go back to one vice-captain."