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Ponting has earmarked Warner and Hughes to be included in Australia’s Ashes squad
Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting has backed opening batsman David Warner and Phillip Hughes for the upcoming Ashes series, stating that there is no reason why they should not be included in the team.
Speaking about Hughes, Ponting conceded that the national selectors had been harsh on the 24-year-old as he has been axed on three separate occasions and constantly moved up and down the batting line-up.
“He is clearly the best young batsman in the country,” Ponting told Australian Associated Press. “The guy knows how to bat. He knows how to score runs. And he’s just the sort of character that you love to have around your team. He would be somebody that I would give a spot in the order and let him go about making that his own…if you give him a bit of love and a bit of stability around his game, I’m sure he’ll come good.”
Ponting has been highly critical of the national selectors in recent times as they have not been able to find the right combination, which has led to them adding players for one Test and dropping them for the next.
The former captain also noted that Warner, who has been involved in numerous controversies this year, will have definitely learnt a lesson or two after being suspended and axed from the national team.
“To me, some of the things that have happened have just been almost tell-tale signs of someone just under extreme pressure,” Ponting said. “The thing about Davey, he hasn’t had a break from any cricket for about two years… and it’s such a high-pressurised environment. You need to be able to get away and let a bit of steam off here and there. Whenever he has tried to do that, he has got himself in a little bit of trouble. He would have learned from that and it will make him a better person and hopefully a better cricketer.”
The Ashes will get underway on November 21 in Brisbane.