BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 22: Travis Head, Pat Cummins, Tim Paine of Australia and Justin Langer, coach of Australia, look on during the team photo ahead of the Australia v Sri Lanka Test Series at The Gabba on January 22, 2019 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 22: Travis Head, Pat Cummins, Tim Paine of Australia and Justin Langer, coach of Australia, look on during the team photo ahead of the Australia v Sri Lanka Test Series at The Gabba on January 22, 2019 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Aussies pull shock captaincy change

Pat Cummins declared on New Year's Day he had no desire to ever captain Australia but he'll end January as the Test team's vice-captain alongside Travis Head.

Cummins and Head were elevated to captain Tim Paine's deputies on Tuesday night and presented to the team as they took to the Gabba for a pink-ball training session under lights.

The elevations are only temporary, brought into the role with Mitch Marsh dropped and Josh Hazlewood ruled out of the Sri Lankan two-Test series with a back injury.

"It is a fitting reward for their professionalism and dedication to drive the elite standards of the Australian Men's Test team," chief selector Trevor Hohns said.

"Travis is an experienced state captain who has had a reasonable amount of success with South Australia and the Adelaide Strikers in the BBL.

"Pat is a fine young man who displays strong leadership though his actions on and off the cricket field."

The pair's appointment sees them handed the roles over both Nathan Lyon, Usman Khawaja and Mitchell Starc - the only other real two settled members of the squad.

However it comes just three weeks after Cummins said he had no eyes on being the team's captain, preparing to focus only on his bowling.

"I feel like I'm too busy in the game bowling and when I'm batting putting all my effort into that," Cummins said earlier this month.

"And when I'm not doing it I'm usually off with the fairies trying to recover. So I don't think I would make a very good captain at the moment." Cricket Australia did however reveal earlier this summer that the vice-captaincy need not be a pathway to the top job going forward.

Meanwhile Head's elevation all but guarantees his spot in Australia's side for the Gabba Test, after he got starts against India.

He has played just six Tests for Australia, only making his debut in the UAE against Pakistan in October.

"Travis was also Captain of the Australia A One Day team on their tour of India," Hohns said.

"Travis was an impressive candidate when interviewed during the leadership identification process we conducted last year.

"He has also continued to develop his leadership qualities since joining the Australian Men's Test team."

News Corp Australia


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