Ricky Ponting to join Australia’s coaching staff for World Cup
Australia captain Aaron Finch in conversation with Ricky Ponting. © AFP

Three-time World Cup winner Ricky Ponting will work as part of the Australian cricket team‘s coaching staff for the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup in England this summer, Cricket Australia (CA) has announced.

In statement Friday, the board said that Ponting will work with head coach Justin Langer and have a hands-on role with the team’s batting with the World Cup in focus. (READ MORE: There’s no desperation in the Australian team: Ponting)

“This appointment also provides an opportunity for Graeme Hick to focus on preparation for the Ashes,” said interim High Performance Executive General Manager Belinda Clark. “With two major events back to back we believe it is important to focus a number of staff specifically on one event. The appointment of Ricky is a part of this overall strategy. Ricky will assist Justin across a number of key areas including strategy and game-plan, but he will also work closely with and mentor the batting group as they prepare for the English conditions.” (READ MORE: Lyon shocked at Saker’s exit as Australia bowling coach)

The news comes a day after David Saker resigned as Australia’s fast-bowling coach with immediate effect.

This is not the first time that Ponting, who captained Australia to the World Cup titles in 2003 and 2007, has worked with the team. In 2017 and 2018 he was an assistant with the T20I squad and last summer in England worked with former team-mate Langer when he had taken over as head coach.

Ponting was part of the Australian team that won the World Cup in England in 1999.

“Ricky knows what’s required to win World Cups, and I know he will be a valuable mentor to not just the batting group, but the broader squad as we focus our attention on defending our World Cup title,” said Langer in a statement. (READ MORE: Places in World Cup squad up for grabs: Langer)

Australia, the defending World Cup holders, are ranked sixth in ODIs. They last won an ODI series in January 2017. Since then, their record stands at four wins, 18 losses and two no-results.

In the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy they were eliminated in the first stage; a 1-4 loss in India followed, and in 2018 Australia were beaten by England twice (4-1 and 5-0) and by South Africa 2-1. Last month, India beat them 2-1.