Ashes 2013: Ricky Ponting backs Australian team; says this is the best they have got

England (above) beat Australia by 347 runs in the second Test at Lord’s, thus taking a 2-0 lead over them © Getty Images

London: Jul 23, 2013

Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting has backed the beleaguered Australian team. Ponting said that this is the best team Australia have got and they must stick with it.

“That was hard to watch. The Lord’s Test was very difficult for Australia and I feel so much for the players because I know what they are going through.

We have all been there, all been on the end of a heavy defeat and all played in Tests when we have been dismissed cheaply and been under scrutiny from what seems like every direction. Australia have been quickly brought back to reality after the good work of Trent Bridge,” Ponting was quoted saying this to Mail Online.  

Ponting said that there were plenty of spectators who laughed at Michael Clarke after he said that Australia could still win the series. Ponting too believes Australia can make a comeback provided all the players perform and not just the captain.

Ponting said: “Clarke and coach Darren Lehmann will be reminding the players of their responsibilities and working on all the little things that go into a side playing much better. That’s all they can do. It will be up to the players then to put it right.”

The former Australian captain is worried about Australia’s batting and the inability of the batsmen to play a match-defining knock like the one played by Ian Bell in the first Test or Joe Root’s 180 at the Lord’s.
Ponting believes that losing James Pattinson is a big blow. He said that Pattinson, Peter Siddle and Ryan Harris are the best bowlers in Australia currently.

Ponting dismisses the talks of including someone like Simon Katich in the line up which he thinks would be “looking back.” According to Ponting the selectors should back the players and give them a chance to grow.
“There have been nine different players, I think, at three since I stopped batting there and Australia need to make their minds up over who should bat there and in the other positions and stick with them,” said Ponting. He maintains that the best players should bat at the top of the order considering Australia’s inexperienced batting line-up at the current moment.

Ponting has advised Australia to be clever while using the Decision Review System (DRS).

The former captain was flabbergasted with Cricket Australia’s statement on Sunday night where they promoted Big Bash League. “The timing, coming so soon after that heavy defeat at Lord’s, was not ideal,” said Ponting.

Ponting said that Australia have to do everything right if they want to make a comeback in Ashes 2013.