Ponting, Watson carry Aussie hopes of fourth consecutive World Cup win: Clark

February 19th, 2011 - 1:50 pm ICT by ANI  

Sydney, Feb 19(ANI): Former Australian fast bowler Stuart Clark reckons that the key to success in the World Cup will the ability of captain Ricky Ponting and all-rounder Shane Watson to stand up when the heat is on.

“Ponting is Australia’s most experienced player and the most adept at handling sub-continental conditions. Many wonder whether age is catching up with the 36-year-old, whether he has lost some of his edge. But every nation still sees him as the big wicket - and for good reason,” Clark said in an article for the Sydney Morning Herald.

“He instills confidence in younger players, inspiring them to greater heights, drawing from them match-winning partnerships or bags and bags of wickets. Judging by the pictures on television and the newspaper reports, there is some legitimate concern that his finger might not be 100 per cent.”

“But I know Ricky, and I know what a tougher competitor he is. There is no way known to man he will not be ready come game one of the tournament,” he added.

The 35-year-old further insists that Watson has become the backbone of the Australian team and the man for all occasions.

“Watson has the technique to dominate with the new ball, the skill to manipulate the spinners on turning wickets and the power to clear the boundary. His bowling is of lively pace, he is a good exponent of reverse swing, and he has plenty of variety in his armoury. Add to this his new-found physical toughness, and Australia have a true match-winner,” Clark wrote.

The defending champions will begin their World Cup campaign against Zimbabwe on February 21. (ANI)

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