Ponting has been training extra hard for the upcoming series against South Africa and to cement his place in the Ashes series
Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting said that he cannot wait to play arch-rivals England in the traditional Ashes series and hopefully bring the Ashes back to Australia.
England have won the previous two encounters, and Ponting is determined to get his revenge by performing well and being a key reason as to why Australia brought the Ashes home after such a long time.
However, before Ponting gets ahead of himself, he stated that the Test series against South Africa will have a major impact as to whether he will be included in the squad for the Ashes series or not.
Cricket Australia and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have changed the Ashes cycle to make it back-to-back series in 2013 and 2013 to 2014, in order to curb the number of times England tours Australia.
Since being dropped from the ODI squad in February, Ponting admitted that he has found his break more difficult to handle than he expected.
After the West Indies series in April, Ponting took two months to regroup and regain his batting form in order to be prepared for the start of the Sheffield Shield season and more importantly the South Africa series, which starts on December 9.
“With South Africa here in a few months’ time and then India there and then an Ashes tour; they’re the three biggest Test series you play. There’s certainly enough to keep me motivated, and I wouldn’t have been up in the gym at seven o’ clock every morning for the last month if I wasn’t, if that means I’m good enough to get through to an Ashes series in England, that would be great, and then we know the next Ashes series is pretty much right on the back of that. That would be an ideal way to finish but I’ve got to make sure I’m good enough to get there first. There’s not much of a gap, but I’m not looking any further forward than the Test series against South Africa because I know if I don’t nail that it’s a waste of time anyway. That’s how it is, and I’ll give it my best,” Ponting said.
The dwindling number of batsmen in the Australian squad has been a huge concern of late, and this has led to the dependence on senior and more experienced batsmen to record a decent score.