My fate in the hands of selectors: Ponting
Melbourne: Under-fire captain Ricky Ponting said defending champion Australia`s premature exit from the World Cup has left his fate in the hands of the selectors but warned that a "clear-the-decks policy" could be fraught with danger.
Even as the clamour for his ouster grew at home following Australia`s five wicket defeat against India, Ponting made it clear that he had no plans to quit but
conceded that it was the job of the selection panel to take a call on his future.
"It is my intention to keep playing cricket; I might not be the best judge of what my contribution to Australian cricket is. There is a panel of selectors who have that job and I am happy to accept their judgment", Ponting wrote in his column.
"Cricket Australia has initiated the much talked-about review of the elite team`s performance and I am looking forward to sharing my views with the review panel in due course. I know that the review will also look closely at my leadership and roles within the team and I accept there will be constructive feedback come out of that process", he wrote.
Ponting said it was necessary to examine Australia`s performance and plan for the future but cautioned that wholesale changes in the team could have an adverse effect.
"It is fair to say that we need to examine our performances in depth and begin to plan for the future. The next World Cup is four years away, there is a need to prepare ourselves for that but there is also a lot of international one-day cricket to be played between now and then.
"A clear-the-decks policy is fraught with danger. Young players need to be nurtured and the best way for that to be done is with senior guys around them", he explained.
Ponting cited the example of paceman Brett Lee to emphasize his point on experience.
"If you want to know what experience brings in crucial times, look at the performance of Brett Lee. Binga was magnificent. People should not underestimate how hard it was for him to get himself right. He missed a lot of cricket and suffered a number of injury setbacks but he is the ultimate professional," he said.
Ponting said his focus would now be on what is best for Australian cricket and it was important for everyone to rally together.
"There will be casualties and change come out of this review but I am also confident it will highlight a number of programs, structures and people that remain the best or very close to the best in the world", he said.
"It`s safe to say that Thursday was my last World Cup innings. It`s been a long and rewarding journey to be part of so many great campaigns resulting in three World Cup-winning teams", Ponting said.
"Right throughout my career, I`ve tried to put the team ahead of myself in the way that I have performed as a player and as a leader. And, that is why there`s a lot to think about on the flight home today from India to Australia`, he said.
Ponting said it was satisfying to get a century in such an important match but he would have preferred to win the match instead.
"It was satisfying to get a century in an important match, but I would have traded every run for a win.
"In some ways we performed to expectations in this World Cup. People did not expect us to win and we didn`t. I believed we could if things went our way but for it to happen every one of us had to be on top of our game" he added.