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Back to the basics, says Clarke

Michael Clarke was appointed as Australia's Test and ODI captain, a day after his mentor Ricky Ponting stepped down.

cricket Updated: Mar 31, 2011 01:56 IST

Michael Clarke was appointed as Australia's Test and ODI captain, a day after his mentor Ricky Ponting stepped down.

Clarke, who was long seen as Ponting's successor, will take charge of the team in the upcoming three-match ODI series in Bangladesh.

Shane Watson will be Clarke's deputy in both Tests and ODIs while Cameron White will continue to lead Australia's Twenty20 side.

"I just want to say what an honour it is to be named captain of Australia and a huge surprise to see Ricky stand down," Clarke, who turns 30 on Saturday, said.

Ponting has also found a place in the Bangladesh-bound team where he would be taking orders from his former deputy.

But Clarke laughed off suggestions that Ponting was "the elephant in the room".

"I certainly don't think Ricky is any elephant in any room," he said. "He's been an amazing player for a long time and I know Ricky will allow me to do my job to the best of my ability. Bangladesh will be a great test for that to see how it all unfolds.

Clarke expressed optimism that Australia has the talent and potential to regain their numero uno status in world cricket.

"The key for me is we go back to old-fashioned basics. That's batting, bowling and fielding. I'm not going to reinvent the wheel," he said.