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'Aus did not take T20 seriously'

Ricky Ponting says his team needs to learn the nuances of the game to lift its modest international record in the shortest format.
PTI | By HT Correspondent, Melbourne
UPDATED ON OCT 22, 2007 05:04 PM IST

Australian captain Ricky Ponting on Monday confessed that his team did not take Twenty20 cricket seriously and needed to learn the nuances of the game to lift its modest international record in the shortest format.

"I don't think there was any need for it to be taken ultra-seriously before the World Cup. The games that were played before World Cup were almost played as exhibition-type matches -- to promote the other forms of the game," Ponting said on returning home from India.

"I think that was the way it was used by most boards around the world, but now it's pretty clear and apparent to us that we'll be playing a lot more. When there's a World Cup event in any form of the game, you want to make sure you understand the game well and you play the game well," he was quoted as saying by the Australian Associated Press.

"Our international record's not great, we've probably only got a 50-50 win-loss record and that's something we're going to improve on over the next couple of years," he added.

Ponting admitted his team was still being educated in the nuances of the game. "We probably learnt a little bit through the World Cup about the format of the game. Going there we were all pretty new to it, pretty inexperienced in Twenty20 cricket," he said.

The Australian captain said with the Indians winning the Twenty20 World Cup and talks of star-studded Twenty20 Leagues the game was sure to get further popular in the sub-continent.

"There's no doubt the popularity of the game in the part of the world we've just been is amazing. With India having won the World Cup, the game is going to be massive over there.

"There's a fair bit of talk about other Twenty20 leagues starting in India, so there's a fair bit happening with that form of the game," he said.

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