Thoughts of Australia striking a significant psychological blow for the summer’s Ashes series with a Twenty20 World Cup victory over England have been swatted away by Pat Cummins.
The old rivals meet on Sunday morning (AEDT) in a heavyweight clash that will put one side in prime position to sew up a spot in the semi-finals.
Both are unbeaten from two matches in their difficult Super 12 group and vice-captain Cummins is confident Australia can extend their impressive start to the tournament against their fierce rivals.
But the 28-year-old fast bowler doesn’t believe a win in Dubai, no matter how comprehensive, would set the tone for the Ashes series on home soil.
Nevertheless, the white-ball encounter could stoke the fire ahead of the keenly-anticipated summer schedule, with the likes of Jonny Bairstow and Jos Buttler among the handful of England players in line to also feature in the Ashes.
“It’s a huge game and we know these guys really well,” Cummins said.
“It’s such a big game in the context of making those semi-finals and we always enjoy coming up against England.
“There are a few players that will be coming out (to Australia) this summer from this side so it would be great to get one on the board against them early.
“But the majority of their side are mainly white-ball players, so it’s a different format (to Test cricket) and I wouldn’t read into it too much.”
When Australia and England last met at a World Cup – a semi-final at the 50-over tournament two years ago – opener Jason Roy smashed a quickfire 85 to steer England to an eight-wicket victory.
Roy was back amongst the runs with 61 off 38 balls in a comfortable win over Bangladesh on Wednesday.
That result further underlined England’s strength and focus, following a demolition of the West Indies first-up, as Eoin Morgan’s men pursue a T20 crown to add to their 50-over title.
“They’re one of four or five teams (to beat),” Cummins said.
“It’s a format where the top three, four, five teams could beat anyone else but they’re right up there in that top tier.”