Pat Cummins has been roasted for shocking turn as MC at ‘unwatchable’ Australian Cricket Awards
Pat Cummins’ turn as host of the Australian Cricket Awards has been panned by fans after the Test skipper struggled through a chaotic opening ceremony alongside his female counterpart Meg Lanning.
Formerly known as the Allan Border Medal night until 2018, the award night has been widely panned for its amateur production and corny speeches.
It all spiraled out of control with Cummins and Lanning tasked with MC duties to initiate proceedings.
During the opening, Cummins began to speak about the impact of fast bowler Scott Boland in the Test arena and tried to joke after lead-off batsman Usman Khawaja proclaimed himself ‘the people’s champion’.
Cummins acknowledged the public push for a statue of Boland at the MCG.
“I know the whole MCG audience wants to see that,” he said.
“Sorry, Uzzie, there’s only one National Champion, that’s Scotty Boland.”
His attempt at a joke was met with soft laughter, but it only got worse from then on.
Cummins burst into hysterics and was unable to continue talking, eliciting a better audience reaction than his joke.
Chuckling, Lanning tried to take control of the proceedings – with limited success.
‘It’s my turn?’ she asked.
“Actually, it’s my turn to speak. Just, really, good luck to everyone tonight, I hope it’s a great night and I hope you’re having fun.’
Cummins managed to regain his composure, adding: “Far too many of us are leading it. Let’s start the night. Thank you.’
Cummins and wife Becky Boston on arrival at the 2023 Australia Cricket Awards at Royal Randwick Racecourse in Sydney
Lanning impressed on the blue carpet, but couldn’t translate into success as a co-MC with Cummins. Lanning came in second for the Belinda Clark Award
“Fortunately no one is watching,” fired a viewer on Twitter.
“With all the money you pay them, at least send them on a public speaking course,” another wrote.
“Oh dear… the lack of professionalism and not really funny… it’s like the idiot laughing at his own jokes that aren’t even funny,” another commenter wrote.
Even Cricket Australia had a crush on the pair, posting the video with the caption, “Are these two going to rehearsal?”
Cummins and Lanning set the tone for the evening, which didn’t get any better after their early stumbles.
Shane Warne Men’s Test Player of the Year Usman Khawaja was impressive when it came time to speak at the awards ceremony
Scott Boland and wife Daphne on the blue carpet. Boland was a popular choice for Test Player of the Year by fans after he exploded on the spot at The Ashes
Khawaja and wife Rachel also stole the spotlight on the blue carpet with their impressive outfits
One fan even thanked Cricket Australia for sharing the results online so they wouldn’t have to put up with the coverage.
‘Thank you. Beats having to watch the rather painful procedure. Such a shame, the original AB medal evenings were quite entertaining’, they wrote.
Others also lined up to pass the amateur procedure.
“These Australian Cricket Awards seem so rushed and haphazardly thrown together it’s almost impossible to watch,” one viewer posted.
“Why would you want to watch?” asked another.
“I wish @Channel7 had invested in better hosts, screenwriters and directors. This #AustralianCricketAwards is next level amateurism. The whole thing looks like a bloopers reel. “Cringeworthy,” added another.
However, special praise was reserved for inaugural Shane Warne Men’s Test Player of the Year award winner Usman Khawaja.
Very emotional (and very funny) speech from Usman Khawaja as winner of the inaugural Shane Warne Test Player of the Year at the Australian Cricket Awards’, one fan posted.
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