Ricky Ponting was part of a dominant Australian set-up that saw him win three World Cups in 1999,2003 and 2007. In 2003 and 2007, the Australian team’s dominance was at their zenith with Ponting playing a vital role. Seven years after he last played international cricket, Ponting is back in the Australian cricket team for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. However, this time as the assistant coach of the side who are bidding to defend their title they won in 2015. The move comes after David Saker, the bowling coach of the Australian cricket team quit. Ponting will assist head coach Justin Langer for the World Cup as Graeme Hick focuses on preparing the side for the Ashes which will be held after the tournament.
Speaking about the appointment of Ponting, interim Team Performance Executive General Manager Belinda Clark said, “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.”
In a statement on Cricket Australia, coach Langer spoke about the value of Ponting to the side and how the inputs will help the players in preparing for the World Cup. “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,” Langer said.
Earlier, Ponting was appointed in a similar role when Australia toured England for five ODIs and a sole Twenty20 International in 2018. Australia was whitewashed 5-0 and they suffered a defeat even in the Twenty20 International. “I've enjoyed my previous short-term roles with the ODI and T20 teams but World Cups take on a whole different meaning for me. I have enormous confidence in the players available to the selectors and know we will be as tough to beat as any team in this year's World Cup,” Ponting said after being appointed.
The right-hander has scored 13,704 runs in 375 ODIs and in 168 Tests, he has scored 13,378 runs.