AUSTRALIA

West Indies star Kieron Pollard is on incredible form. He is at his peak and he has been brilliant since the start of the 2017 Indian Premier League season.


Many did not expect this much from him, giving his recent performances against Pakistan and in the KFC Big Bash League. However, his top form has made Australian cricket legend Ricky Pontingterm him one of the best ever players of the T20.

The former coach praised the finishing ability of Ponting in the IPL after he West Indian star did an innings of70 from 47 balls in the game against Royal Challengers Bangalore. His teammate Mitchell McClenaghan labelled the extraordinary innings “one of the best I’ve seen.” The Mumbai star started the season with mixed fate but his display earned the admiration of the entire league.

“[Pollard and Rohit] are two of the best T20 players the game has probably ever seen. The thing I’ve always said about Pollard is ‘it doesn’t matter how many you need, if he’s in at the end with three or four overs to go, you can still always win’

The head of the pitch making at the SSC ground, Mr.de Zoysa, reckons the Aussies are highly annoyed to be trailed by 2 games to none and just to defend themselves, they are blaming everything.


The Aussies have had a lot of things to lament during the test series so far. First of all, they are unhappy that the tracks they have been asked to practice on have a lot of green tinge on them and they can’t be ideally prepared for the games practicing on those tracks as the tracks on which the games are played happen to be hundred per cent barren and behave totally differently to how the green tracks behave.

Apart from that, in Colombo where they are presently playing the third game, they have not been given the permission to have their fielding, catching and wicket-keeping drills in the area they wanted and they have had to do that on other side and they haven’t appreciated that.

Ricky Ponting’s Mumbai Indians finally got on to the board in the ongoing 8th edition of the Indian Premier League as they beat Royal Challengers Bangalore yesterday at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.

Batting first, Mumbai posted more than 200 and then defended that score successfully with the wily off spinner Harbhajan Singh leading the way for them.

Bangalore actually approached the chase with an unclear mind. They had more than 10 runs per over to score from the start and it was a no brainer that they had to go hard, but, for some reason, they were happy scoring just a run a ball in the power play and as a result of that, the pressure kept mounting.

However, in spite of that sort of start, Bangalore managed to reach 191 and that suggests how good the wicket was.

If the start had been a little better, the target was gettable.

The culprit for Bangalore again was Chris Gayle. He took too many deliveries upfront and then, got out leaving the other players with an impossible task.

AB De Villiers though, being the inhuman that he is, tried his best batting with a strike rate of more than 400, but, there was always the possibility of him going to mistime a stroke somewhere down the line and it happened.

Ricky Ponting has said that Australia needs to improve in all the three departments of the game if they have to win the return Ashes series down under.

Australia has recently lost the Ashes series in England by 3-0. This was the third time in a row that they ended up losing the Ashes.

It’s not that Australia played pathetic cricket throughout the series. They played well in patches. In fact, in 4 out of the 5 test matches, they were on the driving seat at some stage. But, barring that Old Trafford test match where the rain gods saved England, Australia always seemed to find a way of losing the plot. They couldn’t hold their nerves during crucial moments.

That’s where England was better. Whenever they got into a difficult situation, somebody came up with something special.

Ponting pointed towards the same thing in one of his recent interviews. The former Australian captain said, “We played well at times, but, we couldn’t deliver knockout punches.  All of them were delivered by England and that’s the difference between an experienced team and a young team. The experienced teams know how to handle pressure situations.”

“I think Australia will have to have a stable batting line up. You just can’t keep making changes in the batting order all the time, but, that’s what happened in this series.”

“Australia can take heart from the way their quickies bowled. Ryan Harris was outstanding. Mitchell Starc also showed that on his day he can be a tough bowler to face.”

Ricky Ponting featured for Australia in a total of 8 Ashes series in his 17-year career. Australia won 5 out of those 8 series.

Under Ponting’s captaincy, Australia had whitewashed England in the 2006-07 Ashes series.