1994 Allan Border retired by playing last against South Africa. But he had scored 11174 runs in the test from 156 matches with more than 50 average. He reached three digits 27 times. Aussies were never in shortage of talent. But legend like border doesn’t born every day. So team management might conscious about it.
But they wouldn’t wait much. After Border, there upraised another boy. Ricky Thomas Ponting. In Tetra-nation ODI series in New-Zealand, match against South-Africa. He scored 1 from 6 balls in first, reached the second digit against black caps batted in sixth. But his bat smiled, positioning in six, against India next match, scored 62(92). But back to the sixth in final.
After some time, West Indies came to Australia. Selector Rodni Marsh was in serious trouble, selecting one from Ricky and Langer. Getting an opportunity from Mark Wohas injury, Ricky batted in third ODI and scored 43. Again dropped for Marks come back. He got the opportunity in last ODI. But back to the pavilion for the duck in the second ball. On the other hand, Langer got a fifty.
But he was not awaited as he was scoring gradually in Sheffield Shield. It was obvious he would be in Sri Lanka series. But Steve Woahs injury made sure. So he debuted in the first test of the series. When he came to batting then Australia was in very good position. They scored 422/3 as Sri Lanka all out in 251. He scored a boundary in the first ball. From Muralidharan’s delivery.
Ponting has an aggressive batting style. He made 121 runs partnership with another debuted batsman Stuart Law. It was the ninth century partnership of debutant batsman. He could get a century but beaten by Chaminda Vas in 96. He scored 71 in next match. Though that test is known for a non-cricketic cause. Umpire Darren Here was calling no-balls in a row.
Ponting suffered much to be regular in the squad. Woah brothers were in the best form and Mickel Bevan was doing well in the lower middle order. So there was the risk to use Ponting as any replacement. In 1996 he played first world-cup. He scored 45 runs innings in the final. But lost the match.
Next year he was banned for six months and dropped from the Ashes. As Bevan got the injury, Ponting got chance in the fourth test. Australia won the Ashes in 3-2. He scored 241 with around fifty average in last three.
In the next two years, Ponting was in a golden time. He was dependable for Sheffield Shield for two seasons. Then became dependable batsman for 1999 word-cup. Ponting was known an intransigent and short-tempered by time. But selectors found future captaincy in him. Steve Woah got dropped from the world-cup team. It was expected that vice-captain will hold the armband or Warn was another senior. But Ponting came to toss in South Africa tour.
Ricky made number three position permanent for him. He bought 2003 world-cup leading from the front. Best all-rounder of that time Darren Leman was banned, Michel Bevan and Shen Watson were injured, or Symonds of form wasn’t a barrier for Ricky. Ricky scored 140 from 121 balls that provided India a 349 runs target in final. On the other hand, India got all-out in 125.
There was no confusion about captain after Woahs retirement. Ricky whitewashed England in 2006. He led Australia in 77 tests, win 48. Which makes jealous any captain. He bought champion trophy in 2006 and the next season too. He won sixteen tests in a row after Woah. Scored double hundred in own 100th test.
Then it was 2007. They got whitewash to Kiwi just before. Their batsmen were in of-form. On the other hand, South Africa was top of the ODI ranking. Overall South Africa was the hot favorite. But we are talking about Aussies. They found South Africa in group-stage and semifinal. Both time he destroyed them. 28th April 2007 Australia won World-cup. As a captain made Ricky owner of two world-cup.
As captain he had four Ashes, lost three. Maybe losing at home 3-1, pained him more. He had to leave captaincy after losing to India, in the semifinal of World-Cup 2011.
Ponting retired from international cricket in 2012. But by this time he becomes the owner of thirteen thousand runs of both test and ODI. In average of 52 in test and 42 in ODI. His competed with Tendulkar and Lara in his time. Accept in the last, captaincy never seems pressure to him. He has a record of scoring a century against nine tests playing nation.
He won 262 ODI match and 100 tests in his career. None of the cricketers is near to him. He has 41 tests and 30 ODI century. As a fielder, he picked 195 in test and 160 in ODI catch through his career.
Ricky Thomas Ponting came to Graem-Lorem couple on 19th December 1974. His professionalism is a role for any cricketer.