Former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting has been named as assistant coach of the team for the upcoming 2019 cricket World Cup. The three-time World Cup winning captain, whose appointment came a day after David Saker resigned from the position of Australia’s fast-bowling coach, will work with coach Justin Langer at the World Cup.
Making the announcement, Cricket Australia (CA), in a statement, said that the changes in coaching structure will see Ponting working closely with the batsmen. The statement further stated that the changes would help batting coach Graeme Hick to focus better.
“Changes to the coaching structure (that) will see him focus on working closely with the ODI batting group. This appointment also provides an opportunity for Graeme Hick to focus on preparation for the Ashes,” Cricket.com.au quoted interim high-performance executive general manager Belinda Clark, as saying.
“With two major events back to back we believe it is important to focus the number of staff specifically on one event. The appointment of Ricky is a part of this overall strategy. Ricky will assist Justin across a number of key areas including strategy and game-plan, but he will also work closely with and mentor the batting group as they prepare for the English conditions,” she added.
Reacting on the development, coach Langer hoped that Ponting would prove to be a “valuable mentor” in team’s endeavour to defend the World Cup title.
“Ricky knows what’s required to win World Cups, and I know he will be a valuable mentor to not just the batting group, but the broader squad as we focus our attention on defending our World Cup title,” Langer said.
Ponting has served as an assistant with Australia’s T20 team in 2018 and 2017.
Australia are slated to organise a pre-tournament camp in Brisbane in early May before their World Cup opener against Afghanistan in Bristol on June 1. Ponting will coach the Delhi Capitals in the Indian Premier League (IPL) which will be held in April and May and afterward, he will join the Australian squad.
2019 cricket World Cup is slated to be held from May 30 to July 14 in England.
(With Agency Inputs)