Indian Premier League (IPL) team Mumbai Indians (MI) have announced that former Australia skipper Ricky Ponting will lead the side in the sixth edition of the tournament.
Ponting was bought by the Mukesh Ambani-owned Mumbai Indians franchise for $400,000 at the recently held auction in Chennai. Ponting will lead a side already comprsing stars such as Sachin Tendulkar and Harbhajan Singh.
MI's chief mentor Anil Kumble revealed the news in a media release and said that the decision was jointly taken by Tendulkar and himself. “Ricky has a lot of experience to lead a competitive and a high-profile side like Mumbai Indians in the IPL. Sachin [Tendulkar] readily agreed to my suggestion that Mumbai Indians is best served when he leads the batting unburdened by the rigours of captaincy. It was our idea [Sachin and mine] to bring in Ricky as the captain of the Mumbai Indians.”
Ponting, meanwhile, said, that he was looking forward to lead the Mumbai Indians in the tournament starting April. "It’s a huge honor and I thank Mrs [Nita] Ambani and the Mumbai Indians management for the faith they have reposed in my abilities. Mumbai Indians has the potent combination of Indian and International cricketers and I look forward to leading the team to play to its full potential.”
Owner Nita Ambani said, “On behalf of the Mumbai Indians family, I welcome Ricky Ponting to the team as the leader of the side. Today we have world’s two biggest cricketing greats in Sachin and Ricky, and I am sure the duo will be an inspiration for the youngsters in the team. Sachin will always be an integral and important part of Mumbai Indians’ leadership. Ricky will bring in fresh perspective in the team leadership and will have the support of the best cricketing minds like Sachin, Anil and John Wright.”
Mumbai Indians begin their IPL 2013 campaign on April 4 in Bangalore.
First Published: February 21, 2013, 6:33 pm