Cummins primed for Pakistan as Blues fire

Test quick Pat Cummins was in fine form for NSW against WA in the Sheffield Shield

Test spearhead Pat Cummins says he still has the rhythm that saw him star during the recent Ashes series as Australia prepare to open the domestic summer with next week's first Test against Pakistan.

Cummins helped New South Wales to within sight of victory on the penultimate day of the Sheffield Shield match against Western Australia at the SCG, with the visitors needing 324 for victory with only seven wickets in hand.

WA looking settled in reaching 1-116 in their first innings on Wednesday , before Cummins and spinner Steve O'Keefe reduced the opposition top-order to rubble as five wickets fell for 17 runs.

Cummins collected the Blues' best bowling figures, bowling with pace and control to return 3-31 from 15 overs.

He then backed it up late in the day clean bowling opener Josh Philippe for figures of 1-10 as WA slipped to 3-28 in pursuit of an improbable 352.

"I felt really good today with good rhythm."Cummins said. "It is more a case of getting back that rhythm which came pretty quickly (in the summer).

"The good thing is it is only six or seven weeks ago that I was playing in the Ashes, so I don't feel I am re-learning anything."

A draw seemed the most likely scenario after day two with WA at 1-85 chasing NSW's hard-earned 8(dec)-444.

"It was tough work, rather like a tough Test wicket out there," Cummins

said of the SCG pitch.

"The wicket is super abrasive, so reversing pretty early."

Cummins received strong support from his fellow bowlers, with spin pair O'Keefe (3-36) and Nathan Lyon (2-44) claiming half the wickets to fall as WA stumbled to 191.

Daniel Hughes (53no) and Moises Henriques (42no) then rattled off 98 in 17 overs before the unbeaten Shield leaders declared a second time.

That left WA needing to face 17 overs before stumps, but suddenly batting became difficult again.

After Cummins knocked over Philippe, Mitchell Starc (2-5) made further inroads, including dismissing key man Shaun Marsh, and looked hugely dangerous in the process.

And Cummins gave national selectors a small nudge with strong praise for Starc's form and ability to take wickets on challenging wickets.

"For me, he is bowling as fast as he has," Cummins said.

"On this wicket, without him in the side, you just don't get a few of those reversing wickets.

"His control has been really impressive. At his best, he is right up there with the best in the world."