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This is going to stir the pot a bit,:arghh::biglaugh:. I am a huge cricket fan, always have been and always will, and I realise that Ricky Ponting has many detractors, he can at times have a foul temper, he can at times annoy the hell out of me, and as an English cricket fan I will always cheer the Poms on in any test match, especially when playing the Aussies, BUT. Ricky Ponting today announced he is stepping down from the Aussie captaincy, he will I am sure carry on as a 'member' of the squad and hopefully get some form back. But I will say this, when he was on form (and he could get over that initial 30 minutes or so) some of the shots he played were sublime, a thrill and an honour to see in the flesh. As I said many detractors, not least of which will be the loss of the ashes, several times, but looking back at his career I can appreciate what he gave to the game, and many a happy(ish :mad:) day was spent watching him on top form, and as I said, playing some shots that the true greats would have been proud of. Fair play Ricky, you at times annoyed the hell out of me, but it was in the same breath a pleasure to watch you both on TV and in 'real' life as well.:notworthy: Cheers Tony.:wink:
OK, before I go any further, I am one of the BIGGEST cricket fans you will ever meet. I have been to several Ashes series, etc, and appreciate what cricket means to many people, BUT. This last test has shown that Turkeys were not the only ones to get a good stuffing over the festive period: http://s1.b3ta.com/host/creative/63724/1232798231/cptpout5s.jpg Ponting has become the target of some pretty awful press releases and utter vitriol. As I said, I am a huge cricket fan and always will be, even though I am an 'adopted' Aussie I will always cheer for England in the cricket, and would love nothing more than England retaining the Ashes with some great victories. I am not and cannot defend what Ricky Ponting did last night with reference to remonstrating with the umpires, cricket is steeped in rules and regulations, and one of those rules is that the umpires word is final, to question him is just not 'done'. But pressure takes it toll on us all in different ways, we all react differently, at certain times. Lets be honest, we have all acted in strange ways when 'pressure' is applied, it just so happens that we are very rarely in the glare of the worlds press. What I am saying is this. That whilst Ponting as captain should rightly take some of the blame, after all as the 'boss' in any field when things go wrong we should be held accountable to what goes on, but. Ponting can only work with the resources he has at hand. The players in the current Aussie side are 'apparently' the best in Australia. It's not wholly Pontings fault if these platers do not perform on the day, it is THEIR responsibility to a certain degree. But what I find really annoying is this. Ricky Ponting has served HIS country well, he at times was and hopefully will be one of the all time great players to watch. A true great in the modern day era of test cricket. Some of the SAME press and SAME supporters of Ponting when things were going WELL, are now using every means at their disposal to vilify, castigate and attack him at every opportunity. Some of the press coverage has been so vitriolic that you would think Ponting was a member of the Manson family many years ago. Bloody hell, I've seen less ferocious attack made against 'real' criminals and arses. I am NOT saying that Ponting doesn't deserve some of the criticism, of course he does. But what is really bugging me is that the SAME institutions and people who once hailed Ponting a great have now drawn their dagger and he must be wondering where the next stab in the back will come from. Again, not saying that he doesn't deserve a certain amount of criticism, I am the first to say that if a player isn't playing well we as the general public should have our right to say what is going on. But the ONE thing that you will NEVER be able to accuse Ponting of is lack of pride in wearing HIS countries jersey. This is what drives the man on, no matter his weaknesses, Ponting has always taken great pride in wearing the jersey/colours of Australia. To accuse him of anything less, (which has been said) is tantamount to treason. The man at this present time is under huge pressure, and we should be bale to highlight that at the moment he has some issues that need ironing out. But the Australian press and to a lesser degree the people of Australia have let themselves down on a massive scale. Memories are short I'm afraid. Have they forgotten the times when Ponting was a true great and showed the way, I'm afraid they have. The bloke at the moment must feel if the whole of Australia is against him, and rightly so. I don't feel sorry for him at all, but I do feel that the way he has been treated over recent weeks is tantamount to cruelty and bloody mindedness. People are to quick to forget what he has done in the past, and the PRIDE he has shown in wearing the colours of Australia. In short, though I long for an England victory, I can't help but feel the press of Australia, and some of the people of Australia have shown their true colours. They should be ashamed of themselves on so many levels. Of course I want England to win, but not at the expense of one mans sanity. Ricky, if you ever get to read this, (which you won't,:biglaugh:) though I would love you too lose this Ashes series I remember the so called good old days when I would watch you play cricket, and you indeed had no competitors. You were at times second to none, and it was a pleasure to see you. It's such a shame that this fella has become the 'whipping boy' of a nation because he is at the moment on a massive losing streak. Certain sectors of Australian society should be ashamed for the way they have acted, and I for one will not forget them. Cheers Tony.:wink:
What an absolute gentleman ,gracious in defeat ( hes getting used to it now ), spoke well and with respect, what a nice bloke .......HES GOT TO HAVE SOME POM IN HIM , IN FACT I WANT HIM GENETICALLY TESTED, ONE OR BOTH PARENTS MUST BE ENGLISH.....no excuses.....no whinging......no blame or moaning......He cant be Australian ?.....can he Now the poor bloke has to face the music back home......poor bastard. Ive just had to sit in the pub,pint of Worthingtons in hand and watch it ........its a hard life !