Ricky Ponting warms up for IPL as Australia’s T20 assistant coach
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Ricky Ponting warms up for IPL as Australia’s T20 assistant coach

Ricky Ponting will train the Australian cricket team against England and New Zealand in the upcoming T20 tri-series.

cricket Updated: Jan 09, 2018 19:18 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Australian cricket team,Ricky Ponting,T20
Ricky Ponting has been made the assistant coach of the Australian T20 team.(AFP)

Cricket Australia (CA) on Tuesday confirmed that Ricky Ponting will act as assistant coach during Australia’s Twenty20 International series against England and New Zealand next month.

The former Australia captain will work under head coach Darren Lehmann while Troy Cooley and Matthew Mott will also join the support staff team for the series.

The T20 series will involve matches against New Zealand (Sydney Cricket Ground on February 3 and Auckland on February 16) and England (Hobart on February 7 and the Melbourne Cricket Ground on February 10), plus the possibility of a final in Auckland on February 21.

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Ponting, Cooley and Mott will work with Lehmann as regular support staff Graeme Hick, David Saker and Brad Haddin will travel to South Africa to assist in preparation for the four-Test tour that starts with the first match in Durban on March 1.

For Ponting, it will be a case of reprising the role he undertook last year when he worked with the T20 squad for the three-match series against Sri Lanka. Mott is the current head coach of the Australian women’s cricket team which retained the Ashes this summer while Cooley is head coach of the National Performance Programme, based at the National Cricket Centre in Brisbane.

Ponting has extensive experience of the shortest form of the game, captaining his country in the first ever T20, against New Zealand in 2005, and then leading the side in the first two editions of the ICC World Twenty20 in 2007 and 2009.

His professional playing career concluded at the Antigua Hawksbills in the inaugural edition of the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) in 2013 and he then went on to coach the Mumbai Indians to the Indian Premier League (IPL) title. Ponting has been appointed to coach the Delhi Daredevils for at least the next two editions of the IPL.

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“I’m delighted to be involved with the Australian squad again for what should be a terrific series against England and New Zealand. I loved working with the squad last year against Sri Lanka and I can’t wait to be working alongside Darren, Troy and Matthew this time around,” said Ponting.

Welcoming Ponting’s appointment, Lehmann said: “Ricky has a fantastic cricket brain and when it comes to Twenty20 cricket there aren’t many better in the world given his experience around the world, as a player, a coach and a commentator.

“It’s an exciting prospect for us, as coaches, to have the chance to take advantage of Ricky’s Twenty20 knowledge and, for the players, the chance to work with one of Australia’s all-time greats will be just as exciting for them.

“The ICC World Twenty20 trophy is the only one that’s missing from the trophy cabinet at Cricket Australia and it would be great for us to put that right during the next edition of the tournament on home soil in 2020.

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“To do that the planning and preparation has to start now and so the chance to have this run of matches against two top sides in conditions we’re set to face in two years and for us to have Ricky as one of our backroom staff is great news.”

Ponting scored more than 27,000 international runs during a decorated international career that included playing in three ICC Cricket World Cup-winning sides in 1999, 2003 and 2007, the last two as captain in unbeaten campaigns.

First Published: Jan 09, 2018 09:31 IST