We're never going to sit back: Ponting
Ricky warns rivals that his team would not ease up as they continue march towards third successive WC title.india Updated: Apr 18, 2007 23:16 IST
Australia cricket captain Ricky Ponting has warned rivals that his team would not ease up as they continue their march towards an unprecedented third successive World Cup title.
"We've played some great cricket through this tournament. Every game we've played, we've tried to make a bit of a statement on the whole event and we did it again today," Ponting told reporters after his side cantered to an easy seven-wicket win over a weakened Sri Lanka at the National Stadium in St. George's.
"We are talking about Sri Lanka leaving some of their better players out but only their bowlers were left out, they left their strongest batting line-up in and we still restricted them to 226 on that wicket. Full credit to Nathan (Bracken) and the bowling group for bowling as well as they did on that track.
"We are never at all going to sit back and be happy with what we have done, with what we have achieved or where we are at. We have a day off Tuesday now, we have another couple of days training in preparation for New Zealand and we would like to think going into that game that we can improve as well and win that game and go into the semis with a whole lot of momentum behind us," he said.
Both Australia and Sri Lanka have already qualified for the semi-finals. However, while Australia went with a full strength team, Sri Lanka opted to rest key bowlers, left-arm seamer Chaminda Vaas and off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan.
Australia, asked to bowl first, dismissed Sri Lanka for 226 in the 49th over and then cruised to 232 for three in reply.
Ponting, who along with Andrew Symonds lashed unbeaten half-centuries, said he cared little about the reasons why Sri Lanka fielded a second-string attack, stressing that all that was important to Australia was winning.
"I don't know their reasons why, I don't care what their reasons are," Ponting said frankly.
"We turned up today, we put our best team on the park to win the game. We've clearly finished on top now, which is great but we still have another big game coming up. Whatever opposition teams do, I don't care about. They (Sri Lanka) have got to answer all the questions about it, they've now got to take a big loss like that into some semi-final games that are just around the corner.
"They play Ireland in a couple of days and they, probably if they play well, won't get a lot of out of that game anyways, so that's for them to worry about, not us," he added.