Australian fast bowlers Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood. Picture: Peter Wallis
Australian fast bowlers Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood. Picture: Peter Wallis

Why CA rejected Cummins’ contract request

Australia rates Pat Cummins as the best player in the country but has declined to put its money where his future is.

Cummins has revealed his request for the security of a multi-season central contract from Cricket Australia was rejected at the negotiating table earlier this year.

However, Cummins could force a policy change in 2020 after the ironman quick backed up for all five Ashes Tests this winter to illustrate the argument of the fast bowling cartel that they deserve consideration for more financial insurance due to the fact they put their bodies on the line to an extent not required by other cricketers.

Cricket Australia declared that selectors and newly appointed high performance boss Ben Oliver would review its strict current policy on only offering one-year deals ahead of the next contract roll-out.

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Australian fast bowlers Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood. Picture: Peter Wallis
Australian fast bowlers Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood. Picture: Peter Wallis

CA has rated Cummins the No.1 player in the country for the second year running, making him their $2 million highest-paid player.

But the 26-year-old knows better than most how quickly fortunes can change due to the physical strain of the job and admits to feeling vulnerable because his profession puts him at the mercy of long-term injury.

"No it didn't happen this year. They just said they weren't offering anyone longer term (deals) this year," Cummins told News Corp of a push that has so far fallen on deaf ears.

"I hope (it changes in the future). You can only ask the question and see what comes of it. Like anyone in your job, you want more than 12 months security always."

Unlike their batting counterparts, Cummins and fellow spearheads Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins have been forced to forgo millions in Indian Premier League payments due to the need to prioritise recuperating their bodies for Australian duties in the baggy green.

 

New high performance man Ben Oliver. Picture: Hamish Blair/Allsport
New high performance man Ben Oliver. Picture: Hamish Blair/Allsport

 

It's understood CA were reluctant to change the status quo this year at a time when the new high performance roles were yet to be filled, following Pat Howard's sacking last summer.

CA has been unwilling to make exceptions to their policy of making its players fight for contracts every 12 months, but that will now be subject to a comprehensive review and could now change.

That said, CA did continue to support Cummins on a central contract for many of the years he spent injured on the sideline, recognising the limitless impact he could have in the future.

Cricket Australia's selectors and coaching staff looked to take more pressure off the fast bowling squad during the Ashes by rotating members of the attack on a Test by Test basis to preserve longevity.

 

Pat Cummins is the best fast bowler in the world. Picture: Sarah Reed
Pat Cummins is the best fast bowler in the world. Picture: Sarah Reed

 

With Mitchell Starc missing due to his brother's wedding, Cummins is expected to lead the charge against Sri Lanka in the second T20 international at the Gabba on Wednesday.

Like so many Asian sides touring Australia, Sri Lanka showed a frailty against the short ball in Adelaide and there is certain to be more on the menu at the Gabba.

"It is something we speak about,'' Cummins said." There is no doubt the Gabba and the Adelaide Oval have been quite fast and bouncy. All our bowlers are six (foot) four or five and we try and get the pace gun up there.''Starc absence is likely to provide towering Billy Stanlake with the chance to impress his home audience.