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SYDNEY — Former captain Ricky Ponting’s one-day international cricket career appeared over after he was dropped yesterday from Australia’s team for their tri-series match against India and Sri Lanka.
Chief Australian selector John Inverarity said Ponting, the second all-time leading runscorer in ODIs, was axed because of his poor batting form.
Ponting (37) said earlier he wanted to battle through his current slump after scoring just 18 runs in five knocks in the tri-series for a meagre average of 3,60.
But Inverarity, while praising Ponting’s contribution over a glittering 17-year ODI career, seemed to shut the door on any future for the veteran player in Australia’s one-day side.
Inverarity said: “The team will not seem the same without him, but moving on from the omission of players who have been outstanding over a long period of time is the nature of elite sport.”
The selectors dumped Ponting as they announced a 13-man squad with all-rounder Shane Watson returning for Australia’s next two tri-series ODIs, against Sri Lanka in Hobart on Friday and India in Sydney next Sunday.
Questions had mounted over Ponting’s future in Australia’s ODI team following his lean run in the tri-series, where he has failed to reach double figures in any of his innings.
His sacking came a day after he led Australia to a crushing 110-run win over India in Brisbane as stand-in for injured regular skipper Michael Clarke.
Ponting said after Sunday’s victory that he had no intention of seeking a break to freshen up after his poor tri-series run.
“It’s fair to say I’ve struggled in the first five games,” Ponting told reporters.
“[But] at the end of the day I’m available for selection for Hobart’s game.
“I’m not going to put my hand up and say I want a break, because when you are going through a lean trot like I’ve had the last couple of games, you want to turn that around.” — Sapa-AFP.