The T20 World Cup is just around the corner and hosts Australia would look to defend the crown they won last year after defeating New Zealand in the summit clash. Before the marquee event, Australia would look to find out their best possible playing XI, and the Aaron Finch-led side will kickstart their preparation by facing India in a three-match T20I series, beginning Tuesday in Mohali.

Ahead of the first T20I, pacer Pat Cummins addressed a virtual press conference on Sunday where he spoke about the team preparations, the addition of Tim David in the lineup, and the form of skipper Aaron Finch.

“Great to see David get his chance. He has been right up there with the best in the world, batting in the middle-order of T20 cricket is a really tough spot to bat. You see most of run-scorers are opening the batting or batting in the top-order. It is hard to be consistent when there are spin bowlers bowling and he has been fantastic. If he gets his chance, hopefully he can continue doing what he has been doing in domestic T20 league,” said Cummins while replying to a NDTV question during a virtual press conference.

“I agree, I think he is an X-factor. Goes about it slightly different so look forward to it,” he stated further.

Australia are slated to play eight T20Is (three vs India, two vs West Indies and three vs England) before the World Cup. While answering another NDTV question on whether he would like to see his workload managed, the premier pacer said: “No set plans at the moment, I am very keen to play. I think also, the reality is that the World Cup is the time when you want to be peaking. I think we will find that balance of making sure we are ready but not overcooked going into the World Cup.”

When asked on how closely he followed the Asia Cup, where India failed to make it to the final, Cummins said: “To be totally frank, I didn’t see any of that tournament. I think Sri Lanka won? Honestly, I didn’t see any of it. I saw Virat Kohli, I think he scored a hundred, yeah he’s a class player, he was always going to return to form at some point in time. He’s going to be a challenge this next week.

When asked about the form of Aaron Finch and what to expect of conditions in India, Cummins said: “Just the normal Aaron Finch, he has been great. Had a bit of a chat with him, he said he’s in a good space. Even in the ODIs, he knew it was time in his own mind. He seems fantastic, it was only 12 months ago that he led us to a T20 World Cup victory so he is raring to go, and he will be a key player as he always is.”

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“I think a lot of games in India are played at a different pace as compared to Australia, the boundaries are normally a bit smaller. I think you need to adapt really quickly, you will have some days where the wicket is a bit slower, then cutters and those type of things are really important for the bowlers. So, everyone here has played a lot in India and everyone understands it. It is a format, you have to be up for, and if does not work on the day, then you need to move on quickly from it,” he added.

Australia squad: Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Tim David, Nathan Ellis, Aaron Finch (c), Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Josh Inglis, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Daniel Sams, Steve Smith, Matthew Wade, Adam Zampa.

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