Ricky Ponting is not Australia captain

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Getting a new Australia captain is like getting a new Doctor Who. It takes quite a while to get used to the new one because his face is all wrong.

As a captain, Ricky Ponting was both hugely admirable and a world-class tool. A Ricky Ponting interview normally features lots of plain speaking and references to the importance of Test cricket and this is both refreshing and reassuring. A fundamentally honest guy, there was a lot to like about Ponting at times like this.

On the pitch, his tooldom came to the fore, not least when decisions didn’t go his way. The dummy spittery could reach epic proportions and the infamous haranguing of Aleem Dar during this year’s Ashes was actually only the latest in a long line of incidents where he has had long conversations with umpires that seemed to be about how he was right and they were wrong. ‘Shut up and get on with the cricket’ was the phrase most used by viewers at home.

In terms of how he’s carried out the job in the last couple of years, it’ll be interesting to see how Michael Clarke fares. That’ll provide a basis for comparison. We suspect that Australia’s spin woes will recede just a touch, but we also don’t think Ponting was quite as bad a captain and man manager as many have been making out. International captaincy is a far-reaching and highly pressured job and you don’t last for as long as Ponting did without being half-decent at it.

Ricky Ponting is no longer the enemy figurehead. Now that we think about it, it’s not so much like getting a new Doctor Who as getting a new Darth Vader. Next hate figure please.


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  1. This analogy doesn’t work for me. Ricky Ponting’s face was all wrong throughout his captaincy and it is still all wrong.

    That’s not his fault, but it is a long way from the Doctor Who or Darth Vader experience.

    Getting a new Australian captain is actually like getting regime change in a totalitarian country. At first you think, “hooray, our noble chaps have helped to get rid of so-and-so, the rotter”. Soon you think, “oh no, rotter 2.0 is even worse than so-and-so.”

  2. In my lifetime (since 1984) there have been four permanent Australian captains. Border, Taylor, Waugh, Ponting.

    In the same period there have been ten permanent England captains. Gower, Gatting, Gooch, Stewart, Atherton, Hussain, Vaughan, Flintoff, Pietersen, Strauss.

    I’m not sure what my point is. Just thought it was worth sharing.

    Border was captain for ten years. Ten years!

  3. Ricky’s decision is not correct. If a team defeats in a match it is not depending on one person. If all the players played well then only any team can get good score and also can win the match.

  4. I feel empty inside.

    Border, Taylor, Waugh – how could you fail to respect these people in all aspects of their being? But Ponting, ah now there was an Aussie we could actively dislike. With Ponting it was all so easy for us. Great batsman, for sure, but that’s never been a touchstone for whether you like a person you’ve never actually met or not. Great captain too – I well remember his brilliance in the early part of his captaincy, with his “Have a bowl, Shane” tactic, and his “Have a bowl, Shane” tactic, and not forgetting his “Have a bowl, Shane” tactic. We shouldn’t let the results in the “Shane, Shane, where are you Shane?” part of his career affect how we think of him as a captain.

    I’m hoping that a commemorative DVD of his career highlights will be produced, with in depth analysis from some experts. The One Run Out, Two Pratts Affair. His lengthy signalling to Aleem Dar that he thought he was the number 1 umpire in the world in the Melbourne Test just gone. His sturdy upholding of The Spirit of Cricket (excluding grassed catches and run-outs) throughout his career, including in this World Cup. And of course, his finest TV moment after playing Zimbabwe last month.

    It is critical that CA replaces him with someone else we can despise for just existing. Michael Clarke might be that man, but he needs some lessons from the master first. Maybe he could burn down an orphanage or something. That would help.

  5. What are you people talking about?

    Yes, he was an douche. Yes, he was arrogant. Yes, he was a colossal pain in the ass. Yes, he was a complete SOB who always wanted things to go his way.

    – ——————–

  6. Bert – not to disagree, but I always found disliking Border to come pretty easily. Not sure what there was about him not to dislike.

    1. Yes, to be fair , I hesitated about Border before I wrote that. But then I thought, what the hell – this is the internet. Logical consistency, accuracy and truth in an argument come a long way behind making a forceful point. For example, did you know that Allan Border never accepted a single cent in match fees, choosing to give it all instead to homeless orphan cats, whereas Ricky Ponting actually dislikes cats a lot. You see what I mean about him now?

  7. I dislike Michael Clarke, but it is more of a kind of pitying dislike rather than a righteous and raging hatred. Where is the fun in that?

  8. my strongest memory of Border is when Atherton got run out at Lord’s for 99 and Border was stood at the other end like a little moustachioed pixie.


  9. Border was a cunt, Taylor was a cunt, Waugh was a cunt and Ponting was a cunt.

    Quite simply, it was because they were better than us and they knew it and they reveled in it and they never let us forget it.

    That’s not to detract from their quality as cricketers. But, you know, they were cunts.


  10. If we’re looking for a new hate figure, shouldn’t we be all be getting behind Shane Watson for the job?

    1. I believe I nominated Ponting as your hate figure the series after Hayden retired:
      http://www.kingcricket.co.uk/mitchell-johnson-takes-england-back-to-the-nineties/2009/03/08/ and didnt he come through so well for everyone?
      If you are looking to retune your crosshairs I think e-normous in the post below me on that thread was onto something with Haddin as he possesses those same ‘special’ qualities. There’s the hand of dog incident, the argy bargy when he’s batting and hilariously in this world cup getting stuck into the fielding team when Ponting edged the ball and wouldn’t walk only to have egg on his face after the review.
      Even though Haydos and Ponting are gone (or soon to be gone in Pontings case, lets face it he’s no Sachin) Haddin will proudly uphold the high standards they have set in international cricket.

    2. So the next time Michael Clarke’s back knacks up, everyone has to do what Shane Watson tells them?

      This could really prove quite enjoyable.

  11. Oh come on. You got the whole ball rolling on the ‘momentum in cricket’ chat.

    Surely we can influence Cricket Australia to appoint a moron?

    1. Who said the internet was the world’s greatest information resource? What a let down.

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