Former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting has pointed towards the lack of finishers in the middle-order heading into the upcoming T20 World Cup. He was concerned that the team has plenty of run accumulators but not a lot of explosive batsmen.
Australia announced its 15-member squad with three reserves for the ICC event that is set to commence on October 17. Aaron Finch will most likely return to match fitness and lead the side having undergone successful knee surgery last month.
“All the batters in our T20 team bat one, two, or three for their Big Bash teams and inevitably they become the leading runs scorers at the end of every Big Bash so they get picked for Australia. But who bats at five or six for their Big Bash team every game who’s in the current Australian team? There’s no one. If I think of the best finishers I’ve seen – Kieron Pollard, M S Dhoni, Hardik Pandya – where they have batted their whole lives in the T20 game?”
“In those slots, so that’s just their game. But we just don’t have many of those guys who are dominating the back of Big Bash games where you can say ‘right, you’re going to be listed to bat at number six today and if you get 15 balls we know you’ll get 30’. So, again, that will potentially that will be our Achilles heel,” Ponting claimed.
“It’s too time-consuming” – Ricky Ponting on the coaching role
Justin Langer has been in the spotlight recently after several rumors emerged regarding a rift in his relationship with the players. Ponting, who has worked with Langer previously as a consultant coach, was not too interested in taking up the full-time role if Cricket Australia (CA) takes a decision on Langer.
“It’s too time-consuming, where I’m at in my life. That’s why I’ve chosen a bit of the IPL because it’s in our off-season at home and generally, at best, an eight or nine-week commitment. And it doesn’t get in the way of the Australian summer which is the other thing I love, my work with (Channel) Seven whether it be Big Bash or Test matches.”
“I’ve found a nice little niche. If I can do stints with the Aussie team or another team during the Australian winter, then that’s fine and that’s how it worked out with that last World Cup that Justin asked me to be a part of,” Ponting added.
Australia begins its campaign against South Africa on October 23.