Injured Ponting ‘devasted’ at missing final

2010-12-30 09:48

Australian captain Ricky Ponting said yesterday he was not considering retirement after being ruled out of next week’s fifth Ashes Test against England with a broken finger.

X-rays revealed that Ponting had suffered further damage to a fractured little finger injured earlier in the series while playing in the fourth Melbourne Test, which England won by an innings and 157 runs to retain the Ashes yesterday.

Ponting said he was devastated to be missing the final Test but was adamant retirement was not on his mind.

“I’m not thinking about it at all,” he told reporters.

“I’m devastated, to tell you the truth. It was the news I was dreading. During the game I didn’t think I’d done too much more to it.”

Michael Clarke was named captain in Ponting’s absence to lead Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Monday, with Pakistan-born Usman Khawaja and Doug Bollinger the new faces in a 12-man squad named today.

Ponting has been under immense pressure after becoming the only Australian skipper to fail to win the Ashes three times.

There was speculation during the fourth Test that his time might be up after a run of low scores and disciplinary issues in the twilight of a celebrated playing career.

Ponting (36), Test cricket’s second-greatest run-scorer behind India’s Sachin Tendulkar, has had a dire series, making just 113 runs in eight innings at an average of 16, prompting calls for his removal as captain. 

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