Australia v England, 1st Test, Brisbane, 5th day November 29, 2010

Ponting unimpressed with technology


Ricky Ponting called the technology used to rule on disputed low catches "a blight on the game" after his take of Alastair Cook was turned down.

The decision had no impact on the result - Cook was on 209 at the time - but Ponting remains upset that the replay issue continues to simmer six years after he tried to secure a gentleman's agreement among international captains.

Ponting was not animated when he claimed Cook's flick low down at midwicket, mainly because England were 1 for 457, but he started to become grumpy when it was given not out by the third umpire. "If it was the first wicket of the innings I might have been a bit more annoyed," he said.

"I do get a little bit annoyed with it because I think it's a blight on the game, trusting in technology that's not good enough to show them. I could have thrown the ball up straight away and nobody would have questioned it."

The Australians were too tired to rush to Ponting when he leaned forward to scoop up the ball and while it looked like he caught it live, the replays didn't totally agree. Cook said he stood his ground because he "wasn't sure". "I don't think Ricky was sure either," he said.

Ponting was told by the umpire Aleem Dar that the decision was "not 100% clear", and he then started discussing with Cook whether the ball had carried. He said it was the only time Cook, who finished with a ground-high 235 not out, was flustered during his innings.

"I said to the umpires straight away that I was pretty sure that I caught it," Ponting said. "That's about all I could do. As soon as they referred it you pretty much know what the end result was going to be."

Before the series Ponting did not chat to Andrew Strauss about accepting the word of fielders in these sorts of cases, and he has grown weary of his lone battle to get the unofficial regulation passed. "It's up to the umpires now, they've set that standard and they have to make it consistent all the way through," he said. "Not that long ago, you look back to a Test match played at Lord's where there was a pretty obvious one that went the other way."

Phillip Hughes was the dismissed batsman on that Ashes occasion and Strauss was the fielder at first slip. "Sometimes you've got to take the good with the bad," Ponting said. "It just highlights the technology is not what it's needed to be."

Cook had added another 13 when Ponting missed a tough chance to his right as the floating slip. It was one of five chances Australia dropped during their 152 overs in the second innings. Ponting said so many spills were "not acceptable" and that fielding was another area that needed to improve before Friday's second Test in Adelaide.

Ponting's day got a little better with an unbeaten half-century as Australia finished the drawn affair at 1 for 107. "The fact that we actually went out and batted the way we did tonight was a good positive sign," Ponting said. There was little else for them to cheer over the final two days.

Peter English is the Australasia editor of Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Aditya on December 3, 2010, 19:34 GMT

    @Meety - Wow, we were talking about it and it happens with Ryan Harris. Hot spot failed to pick a detectable edge (not for the 3rd umpire anyway). It looked like a pretty good deviation even in the slow-motion.

  • Aditya on December 2, 2010, 14:06 GMT

    @Meety- I'm not sure anymore what exactly are you referring to. But the law 32 (on has all the references to grounding the ball, and not in the context of boundaries, but in the context of being in control of your body and the ball. Simply said, ball shouldn't be grounded before you are well in control. And comparing with other examples, Punter's was a very good case of not being in control to me. Hot spot may miss very faint edges. So in some examples, snicko can be more useful than hot spot, at least when you can be sure that there was no other source of sharp noise, like in Clarke's case (and possibly in Roach's case against Australia). Hot spot can prove the existence of an edge, but it can't always prove its non-existence (in cases when insufficient heat is produced). And I apologise for being bit rude in the last post.

  • Manesh on December 2, 2010, 5:09 GMT

    @Peter Bourke. But none of them argued that his stand is correct even if it proved wrong. Also, all of those claims referred to 3rd umpire and umpire only took the decision. And none of them claimed it as OUT after consulting the team mates. They asked for 3rd umpire only. And what Ponting did in his entire career. He argued about it even if he proved wrong. Not just once, doing the same again and again!

  • Dummy4 on December 2, 2010, 5:04 GMT

    OK, here's the deal: 1. Ponting isn't just a whinger & a cheat, he's also the worst captain, tactically, that Australia have ever had. 2. Your current selectors need to be replaced immediately & en masse. They cost you the Ashes in 2009 & they're well on the way to repeating that feat this time around. You have no idea how much glee we Englishmen feel when we see the names of North, Johnson, Doherty & Hilfenhaus on the Aussie team sheet in place of Hughes/White, Harris, O'Keefe/Smith & Bollinger. 3. Invoking Gilchrist's 'integrity' is farcical: am I the only person on the planet who witnessed Gilchrist using the fact that he OFTEN (i.e. when he was CLEARLY out: big deal) walked to influence umpires into either awarding him catches he'd never taken or giving him not out when he clearly was? Gilchrist perpetuated the myth of himself as an old-fashioned sportsman in order to manipulate events to Australian advantage. He may've been a wonderful batsman, but he was also a gigantic fraud.

  • Andrew on December 2, 2010, 1:53 GMT

    For some reason my reponse to @ findadiat was not uploaded? Firstly - grounded is only referred to involving the boundary, also the act of taking a catch refers to control of the ball & body. I still maintain Punter was in control of both in Sydney. I did go onto say that I was happy for Punters "catch" to be ruled not out as there was an element of doubt. Regarding Hot Spot arguement; all Snicko does is record a noise that occurred when the ball passes the batsmen. There is nothing in Snicko that proves the bat caused the noise by "edging" the ball. Hot Spot gives a clear indicator when a ball passes the bat whether there has been contact. It can help disprove Snicko - in the instance when a noise has occured when the bat grazes the pitch (common occurrance). If Snicko takes 1/2 hour (your words), to prove then clearly it is INFERIOR to HOT SPOT - no bias involved brother!

  • Dummy4 on December 1, 2010, 23:54 GMT

    Firstly, get over Sydney. Its gone, its almost 3 years ago now, just get over it. Secondly, name me the batters around the world that walk every time. I can only think of Gilchrist, and he's retired. So don't bag out Clarke for not walking in this test, as pretty much every batsmen stands his ground until given out. Thirdly, Ponting and all other Australians aren't the only players to make mistakes over their careers. We just don't care enough about other's mistakes to blast them all over youtube. I'm sure your precious Dhoni, Ganguly, Kumble etc have had instances in their careers where they may have appealed for unclear catches or bad lbws or not walked after nicking a ball, but I'm not going to sit here and downgrade them for it because they still remain great cricket players and a billion times better at the sport than any of us that sit here and write comments.

  • Stud on December 1, 2010, 9:43 GMT

    at least we all know now that some of the catches claimed by Ricky were not legitimate. How can he have the cheek to blame the tech after advocating it for so long. Clarke didn't walk in the 1st innings, after edging the ball. So why expect Cook to walk when he saw that the catch was not clean. Without McGrath and Warne, Ricky is toothless and trying to distract critics by blaming the technology.

  • Dummy4 on December 1, 2010, 4:28 GMT

    I wish fans were not so fickle and cruel. For all his deficiencies and uncondonable behaviour, it can simply not be denied that Punter is a legend, if only for batting alone.

  • Dummy4 on December 1, 2010, 4:25 GMT

    @Kaze: Technology wont work in all cases and Punter's idea wont work in ANY case. And as someone prudently said, this the reason for the existence of the unwritten rule of cricket, that the benefit of the doubt goes to the batsman. So we should keep using technology as best we can and if everyone follows this rule, there will never be any disagreements or accusations of bias :)

  • Kaze on December 1, 2010, 1:54 GMT

    @Aina Maria Waseem It works two ways, as Ponting is saying you have to take the good with the bad. He is not advocating against technology, he is saying that technology won't work in all cases.

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