Islamabad blasts justify CT pull-out: Ponting
Australian captain Ricky Ponting says Saturday's blasts in Islamabad have justified his country's decision of opting out of the Champions Trophy, which was eventually postponed.cricket Updated: Sep 22, 2008 14:36 IST
Australian cricket captain Ricky Ponting shudders to think what might have happened had his team been in Pakistan and said Saturday's blasts in Islamabad have justified his country's decision of opting out of the Champions Trophy, which was eventually postponed.
The Champions Trophy was scheduled to be held in Pakistan from September 12-28 but was postponed after a number of countries, including Australia and South Africa raised security doubts and Saturday's suicide attack only confirmed the worst.
"It's devastating for the people involved," he said adding "I mean, we'd be talking hypothetically, of us being in the hotel or England or South Africa being in the hotel," Ponting was quoted as saying in 'The Age' prior to the team's departure for the four-match Test series against India.
Ponting felt they did the right thing by acting on the advice of Australia's security experts and the Department of Foreign Affairs.
"I think what we've done right the way through is that we just have to listen to the advice from the experts and our Department of Foreign Affairs, and security advice.
"Right way through they have not been happy for us to tour Pakistan, so obviously nothing has changed right now, with the tournament," he said.
"It is an absolute shame that things like this continue to happen in Pakistan because, believe it or not, as players, you want to play in all the conditions around the world," he added.
India too came under terrorist attacks recently and Ponting said his team would be given regular security updates during their tour.
The skipper, meanwhile, said leaving behind his seven-week-old daughter Emmy and wife Rhianna last night had been one of the most difficult moment of his life.
"If you take Pakistan out of it and what's happened there in the last 24 hours, just walking out to the car and shutting the door was really one of the hardest things I had to do," Ponting said.
"I guess I've been lucky to have those last five or six weeks at home with my daughter" he added.
Talking about Andrew Symonds' omission from the side, Ponting said that while there had been "positive signs" from the all-rounder, there was no way Symonds would be called up.
Symonds was dropped after missing a team meeting before the first of three one-day matches against Bangladesh in Darwin last month.
Asked if Symonds could be back in the side by November, Ponting said, "How quickly it happens is up to him. It's going to take time for him to address some of his issues."