Cummins has engine stoked to fire in Ashes
Pat Cummins says his best bowling is ahead of him after finding his Ashes groove on the final day of Australia's Edgbaston victory following months of pure white-ball work.
The number one Test bowler in the world took four final day wickets at Birmingham to help pummel England and conceded his early output in the match wasn't great.
Given the new ball on day one Cummins didn't get it right as he was trying to find the "tempo" of Test cricket.
But he finished the first innings with 3-89, then 4-32 in the second to confirm he was indeed getting better.
He arrived at Lord's on Sunday for the second Test freshened by a big break and ready to push Australia to a 2-0 lead when the second Test starts on Wednesday.
"I felt like with each spell I got a little bit better and better," Cummins said.
"I haven't played a lot of red ball coming into the first day's play, and I think just trying to find that tempo of Test cricket, it's slightly different to white ball.
"And I think mixed into that the excitement and the nerves of first spell in Ashes over here. I was pretty pumped up and felt probably by the lunch session I was into my work and pretty happy how I was going.
"Definitely by the end of the game I felt a lot better than that first spell.
"Now I feel really good, haven't really done much the last few days and just build up nicely. I feel 100 per cent."
Cummins also became the second fastest Australian to get 100 Test wickets with his Edgbaston haul, taking just 21 matches to reach the mark.
Best strike-rates by Aussies in Tests (min 100 wkts):— Adam Burnett (@AdamBurnett09) August 5, 2019
- Pat Cummins 46.5
- Mitch Starc 49.9
- Ryan Harris 50.7
- Mitchell Johnson 51.1
- Charles Turner 51.2
- Glenn McGrath 51.9#Ashes
The reminder when it happened brought a fairly big smile to his face too.
But it was a brief indulgence because individual achievements only get a cursory glance when so much more work is needed to win the Ashes.
"I kind of had it in the back of my mind but forgot about it until (Nathan) Lyon ran up to me and patted me on the back,' Cummins said of his record.
"It was really special. Two years ago I was trying to look for my second game, so to get 100 wickets I'm pretty proud of that achievement.
"I'd like to keep that pace up (it only took 21 Tests) I don't think I will. Had a good run the last couple of games so hopefully can keep it going, really enjoying it."
That enjoyment flowed in to the rooms post-match at Edgbaston, where the size of the win, Australia's first at the venue since 2001, and how it was achieved, started to sink in.
"I think the good thing was, the first couple of days we were behind in the game and with each days we felt like we were getting more and more into the game," he said.
"So it was a continual build up of, 'are we really going to do this, we're on top now, all right it's ours to win', so it's one of those moments you finish the game, you sit together and have a beer in the change room and you reflect on what you've achieved.
"We've had a bit of a break so we've been able to reflect on that before we now come up here and concentrate on the next game.
"I don't think it was lost on any of us, for more than half the team it was our first Ashes win here in England, so it's big."