Ponting: Coaching stint just a one-off

“As soon as you’re in a full time coaching role that’s 10 or 11 months of the year gone and I’m not quite ready for that”

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Ex-Australia captain Ricky Ponting has revealed that while he is excited to be an assistant coach for the national team’s upcoming Twenty20 series against Sri Lanka, he has no plans to take up coaching on a full-time basis.

Ponting will be working with Jason Gillespie, who was appointed as an assistant coach, and Justin Langer, who was named head coach, during the series.

A temporary coaching line-up was required as the regular coaching staff, along with the Test team, will be preparing for the four-Test series in India, which begins just a day after the third and final Twenty20 International against Sri Lanka on February 22.

Ponting joined the new-look Twenty20 squad for their training session in Melbourne on Wednesday and admitted that he loved every minute of it.

“It’s all different stuff now, different colours, different sponsors, but it was a great feeling,” he told cricket.com.au. “Not just now, but from the minute I got the phone call from Justin wanting me to be involved for these three games I was very excited.

“I work covering the Big Bash so I get a good look at the players and have a good understanding of how they play.

“To be able to be with them over the next week or two and help them out, hopefully win some games for Australia, it should be a very enjoyable time.”

Ponting also admitted that he is eager to see how he, Gillespie and Langer will get along as a coaching unit.

“We should be able to bring our own sort of dynamic to the team,” the 42-year-old said. “The team will have its own little dynamic, but the three of us played together for so many years and we know each other very well.

“We’re all slightly different as well, which probably helps as a coaching group. Justin’s already spoken about how excited he is to have me around and I feel exactly the same way about being around Dizzy and JL.”

Ponting’s last full-time coaching job was being the head coach of Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise, the Mumbai Indians. The Launceston native held the role for two seasons before stepping down and being replaced by former Sri Lanka batsman Mahela Jayawardene.

Nonetheless, Ponting conceded that he enjoyed coaching in the IPL, but reiterated that he won’t be taking up another full-time coaching gig.

“Coaching in the IPL was really challenging and a lot of fun … to get a real taste for what coaching is all about was great,” he said. “As a past player who’s been ultra competitive all through your playing time and then when your career ends, that all goes away.

“Coaching is a way to add a bit more of that competitiveness back into life. That’s one thing I’ve said to the boys over the last couple of days, I’m a pretty competitive person and if I see things around the group that aren’t the way I want them, I’ll let them know and make sure they up the ante and get everything out of themselves.”

Ponting also made it clear that he won’t be applying for the head coach job of his former state side Tasmania and nor will he look to take charge of Big Bash League (BBL) franchise, the Hobart Hurricanes.

“I’ve got Big Bash commitments and a young family,” he said. “As soon as you’re in a full time coaching role that’s 10 or 11 months of the year gone and I’m not quite ready for that.

“I probably will be down the track, but for now I’m settling back into family life and a bit of normailty which has been really nice.”

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