Maria Cummins: Sunil Gavaskar, cricket, pays tribute to Pat Cummins mum

The Australian team wore black arm bands in honour of Maria Cummins on day two of the fourth Test.

It’s understood Cummins informed teammates and friends that his mother passed away peacefully, surrounded by her family.

Cummins is thankful of his fellow players, and the cricket fraternity for the support he’s been shown in this difficult and very personal period in his life.


Maria Cummins has been battling serious illness in palliative care, with the Australian captain deciding to stay home from the last two Tests of the series in India to be by her side.

As national skipper, it wouldn’t have been easy for Cummins to be away from India, but he has been right where he should be, by his mother’s side for her final days.

Gavaskar endorsed those sentiments and reflected the feelings of the entire cricketing world in sending Cummins and his family his deepest condolences and prayers.

“May I please offer my condolences to Pat Cummins on the loss of his mother,” Gavaskar said on Fox Cricket.

“It is something that I have undergone recently. I lost my mother on Christmas Day and … in the immediate aftermath you don’t seem to realise (the magnitude of the loss) because you’re so caught up with the last rites … (but as the days go by), you start missing a little bit more.

“Condolences to Pat and may her soul rest in eternal peace.”

Maria Cummins was a huge influence on her son’s career and was a proud and dedicated supporter of the Jane McGrath Pink Test at the SCG, as a sufferer of breast cancer.

Cummins wrote five years’ ago about his mother’s incredible strength as she fought cancer while raising five children.

“My mum’s name is Maria and she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005 when I was in year seven at school. She tried to shelter the kids – Matt, Laura, Tim, Kara and me – from much of what went on,” Cummins’ wrote for Athlete’s Voice back in 2018.

“I remember her telling us, ‘I’m not going to be my normal self for the next little while,’ at the outset. And I remember all the family and friends stepping in and helping out with things like school pick-ups and making dinners. My dad, Peter, played the role of both parents there for a while.

“Mum went through all the chemo and radiation therapy. It lasted about six months. She’s one of the lucky ones. She came out the other side.

“But cancer has a tendency to hang over your head long after you’ve gone into remission. There are all the check-ups and the tests and that means the thought of it is always lurking somewhere.

“As a kid you think, ‘Mum said it’s going to be all right so it’s going to be all right.’ It’s not until you get a bit older when you think, ‘That was really serious.’”

The Australian team honoured Maria Cummins and their skipper when the second day of the fourth Test in India got underway.

“We are deeply saddened at the passing of Maria Cummins overnight,” a Cricket Australia spokesman said.

“On behalf of Australian Cricket, we extend our heartfelt condolences to Pat, the Cummins family and their friends. The Australian Men’s team will today wear black armbands as a mark of respect.”

Cummins and his family are very highly regarded in the Penrith and lower Blue Mountains community.

Penrith club cricketer Tyran Liddiard, who has played with Cummins and his two brothers, said the entire family are special people last week when he sent his prayers and thoughts to the Test captain.

“Their family is unbelievable,” Liddiard said.

“I owe a lot to his brother, Tim Cummins. And obviously their mum, you could not meet a nicer family.

“Absolutely beautiful people, I’m definitely feeling for him and praying for him and his family. Pat, Matt and Tim are three of the best blokes you’ll ever meet.”

Originally published as Cricket community pays tribute to Pat Cummins’ mother Maria after her death

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