The Ashes aftermath September 16, 2005

Taylor supports Ponting captaincy

Cricinfo staff

Ricky Ponting is under pressure but will stay in charge © Getty Images

Mark Taylor has joined a growing number of Australian players to back Ricky Ponting as captain despite the "over-reaction" to the Ashes loss. Taylor, who was in charge when Australia became world champions in 1995, said the defeat "may be the making" of Ponting after Dennis Lillee called for his sacking.

"We've seen Ricky Ponting and the Australian side winning everything," Taylor told The Australian, "but sometimes you need a loss to sit down and say 'what can I do, what can we do as a leadership group do to make things better?' If you can turn it around you can bounce back and become a better leader."

As most of the squad returned to Australia yesterday, Adam Gilchrist, Glenn McGrath, Justin Langer and Michael Kasprowicz believed Ponting should continue as leader. A report in The Courier-Mail said Ponting also had the support of Bob Merriman, the Cricket Australia chairman, and at least five members of the board.

The paper said a review of the tour had already begun with Taylor, Allan Border and Daryl Foster, the bowling coach, investigating all aspects of the trip as well as looking into Australian cricket at all levels. Taylor said there was always going to be an over-reaction to the series loss and was not surprised by the mood.

However, Taylor said both Ponting and Michael Vaughan did not show enough imagination with their tactical decisions during the series. "To be critical, I thought both captains at times were either full-on or full-off," Taylor said in The Australian. "It was either four slips, two gullies and a bat-pad or no slips, deep point, deep third man, deep backward square, deep fine leg."

"One of the things you don't want to do is panic in a situation like this," Kasprowicz said in The Courier-Mail. While the future of Ponting is safe Kasprowicz, who played in two Tests and took four wickets, is waiting for news from Trevor Hohns, the chairman of selectors."[Hohns] said straight: `I can't tell you where things sit. We just don't know yet'," Kasprowicz said. Decisions will be made quickly as the Super Series starts in three weeks.