Sydney: Team mentor Anil Kumble has said it was his and Sachin Tendulkar``s idea to appoint Australian batting great Ricky Ponting as the captain of the Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League (IPL).
Tendulkar was expected to be named Mumbai captain for the sixth edition of the IPL, starting April 3, but Indians coach John Wright and Kumble opted to pass the leadership baton to Ponting, the most successful captain in Test history, News.com.au.
The Little Master handed the Indians captaincy last year to Harbhajan Singh, only for the spinner to quit last month, the paper said.
Mumbai released a statement last night saying Tendulkar had no issue with being overlooked and had recommended Ponting take over the leadership reins, and in a mouthwatering scenario, Mumbai hierarchy are considering rolling out a Tendulkar-Ponting alliance at the top of the order.
Ponting``s unveiling as Mumbai skipper came on an eventful day for the recently retired former Australian captain.
The 168-Test veteran, who was snapped up by Mumbai for 400,000 dollars in the IPL auction, said he was relishing the prospect of leading Mumbai and working with Tendulkar.
Kumble, the former Indian Test leg-spinner, said Tendulkar fully supported Ponting``s appointment. Kumble said Ponting has a lot of experience to lead a competitive and a high-profile side like Mumbai Indians, adding Tendulkar readily agreed to his suggestion that they are best served when the Oz great leads the batting unburdened by the rigors of captaincy.
Kumble added it was their idea (Sachin and his) to bring in Ponting as the captain.