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Smith excited about Cummins' return

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 3 days ago Darren Walton

Australia bowler Pat Cummins celebrates after dismissing England batsman Alex Hales (not pictured) during the 4th Royal London One-Day International match between England and Australia at Headingley on September 11, 2015 in Leeds, England. © Stu Forster/Getty Images Australia bowler Pat Cummins celebrates after dismissing England batsman Alex Hales (not pictured) during the 4th Royal London One-Day International match between England and Australia at Headingley on September 11, 2015 in Leeds, England. Skipper Steve Smith is excited to welcome back Pat Cummins' "air speed" as New Zealand brace to stare down Australia's most potent pace attack for Sunday's ODI series opener in Sydney.

Cummins is set to start his first international since September 2015 due to stress fractures in his back and Smith is salivating at the prospect of the injury-plagued tearaway teaming with Test spearheads Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood.

"It looked like he bowled particularly well in the Matador Cup . It looked like he bowled with some good pace so it's nice to have the option of Starc, Hazlewood and Cummins at our disposal," Smith told AAP on Wednesday.

"It's very exciting."

It's also a far cry from Australia's last one-day series in South Africa, when the visitors were whitewashed 5-0 in the absence of Smith and their frontline three quicks.

"It's a little bit different. Obviously the two big guns - Starc and Hazlewood - weren't there and Patty wasn't quite ready then," the captain said.

"So it's nice to have that, I guess, air speed again and guys that are quite experienced at this level so great to have them come back."

Legspinner Adam Zampa's first crack at an ODI in Australia will come on the SCG wicket and Smith is also keen to see how that goes.

"He's done a great job since he's come on board with the Australian team. He's improved a lot over the last couple of years and I'm sure he's going to continue to improve as well," he said.

"He took a few wickets in the Shield last week and he's improving every day so there's no reason why he can't continue hopefully to put performances on the board for South Australia and put his hand up for Test selection at some point."

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