The Ashes 2010: Ricky Ponting plays on in pain

The Pak Banker - - International -

LONDON: Ricky Ponting will play in the Boxing Day Test de­spite Aus­tralia's de­ci­sion to call up a re­serve bats­man on standby.

Ponting's frac­tured lit­tle fin­ger, on his left hand, is still caus­ing him some dis­com­fort five days out from the Test, but the SOS call to Us­man Khawaja is likely to be an un­nec­es­sary step come Sun­day.

De­spite play­ing in the same fix­ture last win­ter with an in­jured el­bow, Ponting is adamant this in­jury is not as se­ri­ous and bat­ting coach Justin Langer is ex­pect­ing to see his for­mer skip­per take the field as planned.

"I would be amazed if Ricky doesn't play in this Test, he is that tough phys­i­cally and men­tally," said Langer.

"At 1-1 in the se­ries, Boxing Day Test, a chance to win the Ashes, he will def­i­nitely be there.

"His in­jury might even work in his favour. He has been try­ing so hard and this might help him re­lax and get ready for the Test match.

If Ponting didn't play then vice-cap­tain Michael Clarke would take over the reigns tem­po­rar­ily. But last night Aussie leg­end Ian Chap­pell threw huge doubt over Clarke's abil­ity to lead the side in the long term.

Chap­pell be­lieves Clarke has a huge prob­lem with short­pitched bowl­ing and is in no po­si­tion to lead the side if he has is­sues in that depart­ment.

"I'm sure Clarke will get the job in Mel­bourne if Ricky can't play," said Chap­pell. "But it's a dif­fer­ent ques­tion if you're ask­ing about per­ma­nent cap­taincy with Michael Clarke. "That's where the area be­comes re­ally clouded be­cause the Eng­land bowlers have sorted him out a bit with some short­pitched stuff.

"The last thing you need to do is ap­point a long-term cap­tain when he's got a bit of a prob­lem with short­pitched bowl­ing. -PB News

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Pakistan

© PressReader. All rights reserved.