Cummins sets sights on Ashes
Fast bowler Pat Cummins has his long-term sights trained on the Ashes, having finally returned to Sheffield Shield action with New South Wales.
The 23-year-old burst onto the international scene in November 2011, when he claimed seven wickets on his Test debut against South Africa in Johannesburg.
Hopefully, at the start of next summer I can play the first couple of Shield games and push for a spot in the Ashes side.Pat Cummins
However, since then he has suffered a catalogue of injury problems, notably with his back, which have forced him to become something of a limited-overs specialist.
Indeed Cummins had not featured in the Sheffield Shield for almost six years, before he returned to the NSW fold for the clash with South Australia, in which he took eight wickets as the hosts won by eight wickets in Sydney.
And the speedster now hopes to be able to back that performance up and prove he could be a major player against England later in the year.
He told the Sydney Morning Herald: "Being realistic, at the start of the season consolidating a spot in the (Australia) ODI side was the main goal - I was really happy with how that all went.
"The other goal was playing Sheffield Shield cricket, with a hope of getting used to bowling four days in a row, backing up and doing it again a couple of times.
"Hopefully, at the start of next summer I can play the first couple of Shield games and push for a spot in the Ashes side, but for now I'm just happy to be back playing."
Australia are 1/100 to win the Ashes series outright on home soil and are 7/2 to claim a 3-1 series victory, with England 12/1 to retain the Ashes.
View all Cricket betting