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International cricket needs a strong Pak team: Ponting

Australia captain Ricky Ponting today asked the International Cricket Council to get to the root of the spot-fixing allegations against Pakistan but said banning the country was not a solution to the problem.

cricket Updated: Sep 21, 2010 14:42 IST

Australia captain Ricky Ponting on Tuesday asked the International Cricket Council to get to the root of the spot-fixing allegations against Pakistan but said banning the country was not a solution to the problem.

World cricket plunged into its deepest-ever crisis last month after spot-fixing allegations led to the suspension of three Pakistani players -- Test captain Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir.

Ponting said the governing body needs to clean up the mess quickly to ensure that the credibility of the game doesn't take a bigger hit.

"ICC should get to the bottom of the allegations. But it won't be wise a decision to keep Pakistan out of international cricket because it will have a bigger impact on other things," Ponting said during a press conference here ahead of the first Test against India starting October 1 in Mohali.

The Aussie skipper spot-fixing allegations being talked here ahead of a major series was indication enough of how serious the issue is.

On Pakistan Cricket Board hitting back at the ICC and the England Cricket Board, Ponting refused comment saying that the investigations were going on and the image of the game has taken a "battering".

He, however, said that "we are here to play best brand of cricket" and hoped the game's image would improve.

Asked if any Aussie player had been approached by any bookie in the past, Ponting said, "the Australian team is very well educated on that side. We haven't been approached by anyone. We are briefed very well by our team management from time to time."