Ponting to prolong Test career
Ricky Ponting intends to continue playing Test cricket for Australia, but has conceded his one-day international career is over.
The 37-year-old was yesterday dropped from Australia's squad for their next two Commonwealth Bank Series games, prompting him to call a press conference in Sydney today.
Although he stopped short of expressly announcing his retirement from the 50-over format, Ponting acknowledged his chances of featuring in another ODI are now remote.
“It's a little bit hard to come here today and say I'm retiring when I've already been left out of the side,” Ponting said.
“I don't expect to play one-day international cricket for Australia anymore and I'm pretty sure the selectors don't expect to pick me either.
“John (Inverarity, national selector) made it very clear to me yesterday the direction that they're heading with the one-day team and that I'm not part of their plans.
“I totally understand the reasons why; my performances over the last five games haven’t warranted me being in the team. The national selection panel are building a team for the next World Cup and right now I’m not a part of it.”
“All I have left now is Test cricket so want to be the best I can be in that form of the game,” he said.
“The passion for the international game of cricket for me has not died or changed one little bit.
“I still don't see a finish line as far as my international career is concerned. Now that one-day cricket isn't there anymore, we all know that day is coming closer and closer for me.
“I don't think I'm the sort of person who is going to want to have a massive farewell series. I'll make a decision when I think that I can't contribute to winning games for Australia.”
The decision means Ponting must return to Sheffield Shield cricket for Tasmania if he wants to continue playing Test cricket.
He will also be available for the Tigers' Ryobi One-Day Cup final against South Australia in Adelaide on Saturday.
“I'm looking forward to playing some Shield games for Tasmania and getting some runs under my belt ahead of the tour of the West Indies,” Ponting said.
“My club team Mowbray might see a bit of me as well.”
Ponting captained his country to two World Cup wins in 2003 and 2007, which coincided with his period as one of the most dominant batsmen in world cricket.
He brought up his 10,000th one-day run in the 2007 campaign and was named captain of Australia's one-day team of the century.
But his past five ODI innings in the tri-series with Sri Lanka and India have all brought single-figure scores.