ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: Ricky Ponting Speaks About Their Batting Strategy Against India
Former Australian World Cup-winning captain and the present assistant coach of Australia national cricket team, Ricky Ponting has recently spoken about Australia’s batting strategy in their recent Cricket World Cup match against India.
The defending champions Australia has started the ongoing 2019 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup very positively. Australia won their first two matches of this tournament as they beat Afghanistan by seven wickets and Windies by 15 runs. However, in their third game of this tournament, Australia suffered a defeat against India by 36 runs.
Chasing down the 353 runs target against India, Steven Smith was promoted at the no.3 position. Generally, in the present time, Usman Khawaja bats at this no.3 position. Talking about this, Ricky Ponting has clarified that they took that decision to maintain the left-hand and right-hand batting combination. He further added that Smith’s fine batting ability against the spinners was the other reason to take that decision.
Ponting told cricket.com.au, “We wanted to have a favourable left-hand, right-hand match-ups with those spinners and we thought Steven plays spin as well as anybody, so that was the only reason
“It happens quite a lot in the modern game where you see that right-hand, left-hand combination, especially if they’ve got a lot of spin.
“If it’s past 35 overs, you’re probably not going to do it (bat Khawaja at four), Glenn Maxwell is going every day of the week after that. In the right time and right moment, I think it can work really well.”
Smith scored 69 runs off 70 balls. Meanwhile, Khawaja played a knock of 42 runs off 39 balls. Australia fought till the last moment but managed to score 316 runs (50 overs) before losing all wickets.
Finch and Warner are probably as good as openers in the world – Ricky Ponting
Ponting has also praised the Australian limited-overs opening partners, Aaron Finch and David Warner. He feels that they are one of the best opening partners in world cricket. During their match against India, Finch-Warner had the 61-run opening partnership.
Ponting said, “Finch and Warner are probably as good as openers in the world. Finchy has turned things around really well in the last five or six months, Davey coming back has made runs.”
After returning to the international cricket, Warner has scored 89*, 3 and 56 runs in this Cricket World Cup. However, Warner’s batting against India was not his best performance (56 off 84 balls) as his slow batting put Australia under pressure in the early moment of that chase.
Ponting added, “By his own admission, (Warner) probably wasn’t at his absolute best (against India). He hit the field too often early on and wasn’t able to rotate as he would have liked.”
Chasing down that big target, Australia managed to score 48/0 in the first ten overs. With time progresses, Australia’s required run-rate was climbing up to the toughest level.
Ponting claimed, “Our batting was just a little bit off again. We seemed to find the field a lot in the first 10 overs.
“It was always going to be a hard task. From about the 20-over mark on, something pretty spectacular had to happen from not just one, but probably two of our batters.”
Aaron Finch’s run out happened at a really crucial time
Ponting believes that Finch’s run-out hurt them mostly in the match against India. He feels that one of their top-order batsmen should score a big century like Shikhar Dhawan to chase that giant target successfully.
He said, “The run out happened at a really crucial time (the 14th over). The momentum had just started to turn there, Finchy had started to find the boundary a bit more frequently.
“We just needed someone at the top to go on and make a big hundred like Dhawan did and we would have been right in the game.
“There’s certainly enough skill and enough talent to turn it around pretty quickly.”
Australia will play their fourth match of the ongoing Cricket World Cup on Wednesday (12th June) when they will face Pakistan at Taunton.
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