Calls for Ponting’s retirement grow strongerNovember 20th, 2011 - 7:48 pm ICT by IANS
Melbourne, Nov 20 (IANS) Calls for Ricky Ponting’s retirement from international cricket grew stronger with Test legend Doug Walters and former wicketkeeper Ian Healy joining the chorus saying the former Australian captain should call it a day with the two-Test series at home against New Zealand next month.
The Australian media has also come down harshly on Ponting, who turns 37 next month, and said the batting legend has to be honest with himself.
New selection boss John Inverarity refused to put an expiry date on Ponting, but says the National Selection Panel (NSP) is keen to inject fresh blood into the Australian team.
Ponting, however, got the much-needed backing from legendary captain Allan Border and former England captain Tony Greig.
Walter, a huge fan of Ponting, said he is getting towards the end.
“I’m a huge fan of Ricky as a batsman, but he’s getting towards the end and perhaps we can get more out of him if he moves down a notch (in the batting line-up),” Walters was quoted as saying by The Daily Telegraph.
Ponting, who took over from Steve Waugh, stepped down from captaincy earlier this year after Australia’s quarter-final exit from the World Cup. He led Australia in 77 Tests, winning 48, the most for any captain. He also captained Australia in a record 228 ODIs and won 164, including two World Cups in 2003 and 2007.
Ponting, the third highest run getter in Tests, is having a miserable form with the bat. In the ongoing Test series in South Africa, he made 8 and 0 in the first Test in Cape Town and fell for a third-ball duck in the first innings of the ongoing Test in Johannesburg.
His last half-century came a year ago and his last century, a majestic 209, came almost two years ago against Pakistan in Hobart. He has averaged just 25 in his last 14 innings and has failed to reach double figures seven times in his last 13 innings.
Healy said faults are visible in his former teammate’s batting something that he has never seen before.
“There are faults that have never been in his technique before and I don’t like his statistics from the past 12 months. No one who has played for as long as he has should be averaging in the teens. I think it’s a pretty easy decision. He’s been on the wane for some time now and without something special, it’s time for Ricky to say, ‘I’m finishing’,” said Healy.
Border, a commentator in the ongoing Test series, refused to comment on Ponting’s future but The Daily Telegraph reported that Border privately believes that Ponting should dig his heels in and is convinced that he has more to offer the national team.
Greig feels that Ponting is still in the best Australian team.
“I suspect Ponting will go into the new summer in Australia regardless of what happens in this Test,” Greig said. “If it keeps going wrong they have to look at somebody else, but is there someone who has made four (first-class) hundreds in a row and deserves to step into that position?”
Inverarity said the selection committee is keen to have some new faces in the team.
“Ricky Ponting is a magnificent cricketer and a fine man, a very resilient man. All selectors are always looking for a change of blood and to bring young players in and you have to balance that with picking your best side,” he said.
- 'Ponting contemplating retirement from ODIs' - Feb 20, 2012
- Gatting urges Ponting to walk away from Oz captaincy to prolong Test career - Dec 10, 2010
- Have no intentions to retire, says Ponting - Nov 24, 2011
- Ponting axed from Australia's ODI squad, Watson returns - Feb 20, 2012
- Arthur tells Ponting and Hussey to perform or perish - Dec 20, 2011
- Australia drop Marsh, rest Haddin for ODI tri-series - Jan 30, 2012
- Harris returns to Australia Test squad - Dec 30, 2011
- Ponting hindering renewal of Oz team by not giving up skipper's job: Chappell - Dec 30, 2010
- Clarke feels Ponting is victim of own high standards - Apr 21, 2012
- Forrest, Wade in Australia's Test squad; Haddin retained - Mar 14, 2012
- Clarke admits role in Ponting's axing - Feb 23, 2012
- Roebuck urges Ponting to move to No.5 in batting order to prolong Test career - Dec 30, 2010
- If we lose again, will probably be looking for another job: Ponting - Dec 29, 2010
- We have always put the team first: Clarke - Jan 06, 2012
- Ponting wants to carry on even after India series - Dec 28, 2011
Tags: allan border, australian captain, batsman, captain tony, daily telegraph, doug walters, england captain, final exit, fresh blood, getter, international cricket, national selection, odis, ricky ponting, selection panel, steve waugh, test series, tony greig, wicketkeeper, world cups