Cricket: After a gutsy innings, Ravindra Jadeja finally fell to Aussie quick Pat Cummins
PAT Cummins started this Test at the foot of the Himalayas, but by the end he might feel like he’s climbed them.
Pushed to the brink of exhaustion, Cummins delivered arguably the most menacing fast bowling display since Mitchell Johnson’s frightening heroics in the 2013-14 Ashes.
On an Indian pitch — albeit a bouncy one — Cummins was brutal in the first innings, intimidating, rapid and relentless.
A crippling top order second innings collapse had Australia’s hopes of Border Gavaskar Trophy history hanging by a thread, but through no fault of Cummins.
When he should have been allowed to put his feet up and rest it was left up to him to try and carve out a target that he could defend.
Regardless of how it plays out in Dharamsala, there will be an England team quietly sweating bullets at the prospect of facing Cummins at the Gabba in November.
Cummins was scanned after his first Test back in six years in Ranchi last week and came up clear.
If he can come through his 30-over Dharamsala examination with another full bill of health it will be full steam ahead to the Ashes.
Just watching Cummins evoked memories of the way Johnson could bully an opposition out of a game, but there’s something about him which suggests he possesses the one thing Johnson lacked for long periods of his career — unyielding consistency.
That of course on the proviso he can stay on the park.
Cummins figures of 3-94 were impressive — but they only told half the story.
Indian opener Lokesh Rahul had declared the right-armer’s day two spell the toughest challenge he has faced in his promising Test career.
On day three it went up a notch as Cummins roared Australia back into the game with a devastating final effort that bumped out Ravi Jadeja (63) and Wriddhiman Saha (31) in spectacular fashion.
The ball that got Saha was a scarily accurate bouncer that Saha could only manage to fend off with his glove to the leaping outstretched hand of a leaping Steve Smith.
Cummins instigated an Indian collapse of 3-1 in 13 balls, but with more support earlier in the match, he could have put Australia well on top of the game.
Originally published as Fiery Cummins will have England shaking