Pat Cummins sticks the boot into England ahead of Matildas' World Cup semi-final

The Aussie cricket captain has joined David Warner in taking a dig at the old enemy.

Pat Cummins, pictured here alongside Matildas players at the World Cup.
Pat Cummins has taken a dig at England ahead of the Matildas' World Cup semi-final. Image: Getty

Pat Cummins has joined David Warner in taking a pot-shot at England before the Matildas' semi-final showdown with the old enemy at the Women's World Cup. On the back of Australia retaining the Ashes in the men's and women's cricket, and the Diamonds beating England in the Netball World Cup final, the Matildas will be looking to keep the momentum going on Wednesday night when they take on the Poms.

On Tuesday afternoon, Aussie cricket star Warner fired a brilliant barb at England when he tweeted: "An early good luck to the Matildas. Just keep an eye out in case the Poms ask to change the ball."

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Warner was referencing the controversial moment in the fifth Ashes Test when umpires gave England a replacement ball that was much newer than the one they'd been using, which allowed them to take three key wickets and eventually win the Test to draw the series 2-2. Warner clearly hasn't forgotten the controversy and was quick to reference it on Tuesday.

If that didn't infuriate England fans enough, captain Cummins also had a dig at the old enemy. "There's nothing more satisfying as an Aussie than getting one up on our English mates," he told reporters later on Tuesday.

Cummins said he's been captivated by the Matildas' magical run to the World Cup semi-finals. "There's a moment, whether it's in sport or something else, that brings the whole of Australia together and that's what it's felt like with this Matildas team," he said. "I'll be absolutely pumped if they get up."

Matildas players smack down England 'rivalry' ahead of semi-final

Despite the Aussie cricketers taking a dig, Matildas players are adamant there's no real rivalry with England in women's football. "Obviously you see it in the men's competitions, especially in cricket and rugby," reserve keeper Lydia Williams told reporters on Tuesday.

"But for us, we've had so many rivalries with other countries that we've played against. We've played against Brazil at every other World Cup. So you could say that (about Brazil), you could say that about America, you could say that about so many countries. So really, for us it's just another game.

"All the like extra stuff of rivalries, it doesn't really come about. If anything, it's to prove a point that we can make the final and represent Australia that way."

Midfielder Tameka Yallop added: "The biggest internal rivalry is probably New Zealand still. But within the team right now, our mindset is to be the best you've got to beat the best so for us, England are right up there and so the other teams in the semi-finals as well. We're at that stage in our game and in our mindset that we can beat the best and we've shown it before and it's all about going out and doing it in this game."

Matildas players Caitlin Foord, Sam Kerr and Steph Catley.

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England captain Millie Bright said it was fantastic to see the absolute frenzy the Matildas have created during their fairytale run to the semi-finals. "From a women's football perspective, it's brilliant," Bright told reporters.

"It's staying with the growth of the game and yet again we've gone to another level in the tournament. We've seen that with the crowds and I can't speak on their behalf of what they're feeling in their environment, but from our past experiences it was incredible.

"But for us it was really important to stay focused as well because obviously with noise attention goes elsewhere. As much as you know it's the home nation, it's also that it's a pressured environment.

"But yeah, it's amazing for the game.You want a semi-final to be this way and be so much noise around it, so much support and the fans.

"But I can only speak from my journey so far it's been incredible. The support that we've seen throughout the tournament and not only here but back home as well. But yeah, I'm sure they're absolutely loving the moment at the minute - obviously, it's a very special thing to experience a home tournament."

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