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Ponting sees potential in Australia's team

Renaldo Matadeen

August 17, 2013

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Ricky Ponting participates in a fielding drill, Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel v Antigua Hawksbills, Caribbean Premier League, Port-of-Spain, August 11, 2013
Ricky Ponting: "The state Australian cricket is at, at the moment, my services could be used in some way" © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Ricky Ponting
Series/Tournaments: Caribbean Premier League | The Ashes
Teams: Australia

Ricky Ponting sees potential in the current Australia team, despite their disappointing Ashes against England. Ponting believes that there have been spots of brightness from time to time, but admitted that England were the dominant side.

"I have kept in touch with it [the Ashes] and putting my biased goggles on for a minute, I think the boys have probably played a little bit better than the scoreline suggests as they have been in with a chance of winning three Tests," Ponting, who is on duty with the Antigua Hawksbills in the Caribbean Premier League, said. "But the scoreline reads 3-0 and that is the difference sometimes between the really good and experienced teams, and the ones on their way up... the know-how to actually get across the line and to win games.

"England have got a really good team, an experienced team and their bowling group has been together for pretty much the last six or seven years now."

Australia have much to learn still, but they are headed in the right direction, he said. "There are some challenges there for Australia cricket but with Darren Lehmann's appointment as coach and some of the younger guys they have got around there I think there is enough talent but they are just going to have to learn and at the moment they are learning the hard way."

Ponting will be in the commentary box this Australian summer, covering the Big Bash League, but he also sees himself staying within the game in a more hands-on approach. "There is no doubt I will stay in the game somewhere. There will be some coaching offers that will come my way and I am really interested in coaching. I'm really interested in helping out younger players," he said. He was confident that he had a lot left to offer the breeding grounds of Australian cricket.

"The state Australian cricket is at, at the moment, my services could be used in some way. We will just wait and see, but the one thing I do not want to do is to travel around the world for six or eight months a year."

Renaldo Matadeen is a sportswriter and social media manager for ESPN Caribbean. He tweets here

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by ScottStevo on (August 20, 2013, 21:28 GMT)

@Steve Back, what do 300 plus totals have anything to do with how these teams are matched? Actually, I think these 2 teams are reasonably close and this series has proved that in that Aus have had major opportunities to win 3 out of the 4 tests. Also, it's been one guy scoring all of your runs and your top order has generally failed and been 3 for not many more times than not. A few, let's say favourable decisions, going the way of some in the middle order, ie Bell, have allowed Eng to make up those runs when they looked far from doing so. You discuss your recent win in India as a measuring stick, then state SA have the best bowling depth, yet Aus competed (and should've at worst drawn) in our series vs SA whereas Eng were slammed into the turf. A few decisions here and there at crucial times and Aus could well have won the first, a lot less rain and Aus win the third. In the 2nd & 4th Aus batting collapses cost us rather than Eng's good play...so yes, they are closer than 3-0 suggests

Posted by Samdanh on (August 19, 2013, 6:07 GMT)

But for more marginal umpire calls and the greatest howler of recent times which went against Aus, and the weather in Old Trafford depriving them of a victory, the scoreline could have been 2-2. I agree with Ponting. Aus should put their chin up and continue to strive hard. Victories may be far or fewer. But the team seems to be on right track. Couple of personnel changes in batting could enhance Aus strength in the longer run

Posted by Whatsgoinoffoutthere on (August 18, 2013, 10:07 GMT)

Regarding DRS. If you don't want to be LBW, hit the ball.

However, I get the feeling that the players aren't impressed with the umpires' abilities and interpretations and are taking the mickey just a bit, to show up the system's deficiencies. Broad's non-dismissal, Harris walking in the middle of a review so all the umpire had to give out was an empty pitch, the whole lot of it looks to me like a bunch of people with criticisms of the system, but who know that current terms and conditions basically deny them the right to speak out without censure.

Posted by Moppa on (August 18, 2013, 9:01 GMT)

There's no great mystery here: Australia *are* closer than 3-0 would imply and England *are* comfortably the better side - so both sets of arguments from supporters are broadly correct. Australia's good moments in this series remind me a lot of the 2012-13 series vs South Africa. When Australia landed a few punches it was surprising and exciting, but they failed to land the killer blow. When South Africa hit back, they did it decisively and almost effortlessly. This is the nature of a team that is close but outmatched - they fight and create opportunities but seem to almost inevitably lose the key moments and slip away. I think people will see a real contrast when Australia next take on a team of comparable experience and ability (e.g. Sri Lanka, NZ, Pakistan) - they will feel they can win the key moments, and probably will.

Posted by   on (August 18, 2013, 8:33 GMT)

@Wefinishthis, an argument can be made for having Starc and Patto in the top 6? Sorry mate, but no it can't. They are very handy batsmen coming in against an old ball, but if they are coming it at 3-50 its a different proposition. Lets try and remain realistic.

I think this series is going to finish with us all thinking exactly what we knew beforehand anyway. Australia has a big hole in its batting, particularly on the experience side of the ledger, and pretty good bowling. England has pretty solid, experienced batting and pretty good bowling. So for the ost part we have seen an excellent battle between Aussie bowlers and English batsmen but when it comes to the Aussie batting we've seen some okay performances, flavoured with two tremendous collapses. And that my friends is that. Perhaps time and experience will bring some of our so so bats like Warner and Hughes up to scratch or perhaps it won't and we'll have to wait for the next round of batsmen to come through.

Posted by riahcmra on (August 18, 2013, 8:15 GMT)

England has a good team but ... my worry is the death of strokeplayers did anyone see the Hawkeye prediction of LBW for Warner 1/2 way down the pitch and the ball landed 6 inches in front of his pad. Hawkeye was saying he was out ... England didn't appeal against the umpire's not out .. but ... thats ridiculous and leg stump LBWs ... ridiculous ... clipping the outside of leg stump ... how is a batsmen supposed to bat? 1 foot wide of leg stump ? what I'm saying is ... the nudgers and deflectors are doing best ... Bell ... Rogers DRS will kill strokeplayers the way things are going ... get ready for minimal backlifts and boring batting .... I originally thought DRS was good ... but it has to go a bunch of geeks are destroying strokeplaying ... I say kill it before it kills cricket

Posted by TomPrice on (August 18, 2013, 7:53 GMT)

It's not enough to be in with a chance, as England fans know very well. Plenty of hard road ahead for Australia. It must be shocking for everybody to realize how dependent the side has been on Hussey these last few years. Mickey Arthur was left with no trousers on, Clarke was scrambling to rewrite his legacy before the series even began. 3-0 is not even half the story. Try 7 defeats out of 8 and staring down the barrel.

Posted by Greatest_Game on (August 18, 2013, 7:17 GMT)

The teams are close to even. Close, but not quite. The series has been dominated, and won, by Ian Bell. 500 runs, an average of 71.42, 3 centuries, 2 fifties. Eng's next best, Root, has an ave just over HALF of Bell's. Clarke at 49.42 & Rogers at 43, have each made tons, but are still 20 behind Bell's ave, & he has 3 tons. The only match Eng did not lose, Bell did not go big.

The teams are close, except for Bell who is in another league. Give credit where credit is due:

Posted by hyclass on (August 18, 2013, 2:50 GMT)

What value is there in looking at the scores, when the underlying malaise causing all disfunctionality within the Australian cricket system continues to fester away unchecked? M.Hussey described how he was forced by CA, along with Bollinger to play the T20 finals in India. He mentioned how, with the age myth they were propagating, that he felt his lack of preparation for the Test series might end his career and how it led to his earlier retirement. Bollinger played the finals, flew straight to a Shield match in WA and then straight across to the Test match. At that point, with exhaustion being a factor, he was summarily dismissed by a well orchestrated campaign re his fitness, that failed to name CA's complicity. Hauritz bore the brunt of being told to 'bowl like Harbajan' by Ponting on a tour of India and never recovered his own game. DeCosta cites Hughes,'being forced to prepare in a way that was unsuited to his game.'on joining the '09 Ashes squad.Another player who hasnt recovered.

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