Ricky Ponting has announced he will retire after the third Test against South Afrca. Australia’s most successful captain will pull the curtain down on a 17 year international career in after the match in Perth which starts tomorrow.
The 37-year-old cited a lack of form in the current series against the Proteas as the main factor in his decision.
The batsman, who will be 38 next month, has scored just 20 runs in three innings so far with the final Test to come in Perth on Friday. He was expecting a far better return having come into the series on the back of some good form with the bat in State cricket.
“It’s a decision I thought long and hard about, put in long consideration about the decision, at the end of the day it was about my results and my output in this series so far,” Ponting said.
“It hasn’t been to the level required for batsmen and players in the Australian team. My level of performance hasn’t been good enough.
Ponting won 48 Test matches as captain, surpassing Steve Waugh’s record of 41 during Australia’s 5-0 drubbing of England in 2009/10 series.
The Test match in Perth will be Ponting’s 168th game for Australia and this equals Waugh’s record for most Test matches for Australia. With over 13,000 Test runs to his name, Ponting really will go down as one of the greats of the game.
There is a lot riding on Ponting’s final Test match. If Australia beat South Africa then they will win the series and reclaim the number 1 spot that they enjoyed for so long under the Tasmanian’s leadership earlier in his career. This really would be a fitting way to end such an illustrious career.
“I want to be a consistent performer, and if you look back over the last 12 or 18 months I haven’t been able to perform consistently.
“That’s why I believe the time is right now to be making this decision.”
After the Test, Ponting will continue to play for his home state Tasmania and will play for Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash League.
Check out Ricky Ponting announcing his retirment here: