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  1. #1
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    Ricky Ponting: Australia ‘strong as any’ at 2019 World Cup with Steve Smith and David Warner

    Ricky Ponting is adamant the return of Steve Smith and David Warner can propel Australia to World Cup glory despite the team’s recent ODI woes.

    Ponting, who captained Australia’s triumphant 2003 and 2007 World Cup sides, has been appointed an assistant coach for this year’s campaign in England.

    He will take over from batting coach Graeme Hick who will focus on preparing the Test squad for the Ashes.

    Smith and Warner’s bans expire two months before the World Cup, on March 29, and their preparations have been disrupted by elbow injuries.

    But far from tempering expectations, Ponting believes the superstar duo’s return will dramatically boost Australia’s chances.

    “India and England are probably the two standout teams right now but if you add Warner and Smith back into that line-up, I think that team looks as strong as any,” Ponting told reporters in Melbourne.

    “With the inclusion of two of the best one-day players in the world and a lot of experience, all of a sudden the team starts looking a lot better.

    “And you’ll have guys that will handle pressure situations a lot better.”

    Smith is no chance of taking part in next month’s ODI series against Pakistan in the UAE. Warner will, at best, play the last couple of matches.

    The most likely scenario has them shaping up in the Indian Premier League and, particularly in Smith’s case, racing the clock to be fit for the World Cup.

    Key pacemen Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood are also battling injuries and will miss this month’s white-ball tour of India.

    Ponting will effectively serve as Justin Langer’s right-hand man with the Aussies seeking to overcome a dreadful run of form.

    Since the start of 2018, they have played 16 ODIs and won three. “I think the thing that’s held us back the last few years in one-day cricket has probably been how we play spin bowling,” Ponting said.

    “That was certainly an issue when I was with the team in England last year. Moeen Ali and (Adil) Rashid tied our batsmen up.

    “Looking at our lineup now, there’s potentially a few better players of spin in the middle order than what we had this time last year. But you think about English conditions as well, the wickets probably shouldn’t spin too much throughout the World Cup.”

    Ponting’s IPL commitments mean he won’t join the Australian camp until after the subcontinent tours but he is hopeful of an immediate impact, having previously worked short-term with Australia’s ODI and T20 squads.

    His appointment was made public the day after Cricket Australia announced bowling coach David Saker, who is thought to have clashed with Langer, had resigned.

    Hick’s tenure beyond the Ashes also looks shaky but Ponting said his commentary role with Seven would prevent him taking a Test coaching role. He is open however to taking on more short-term contracts.

    https://www.foxsports.com.au/cricket...a61053a9658c87


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  2. #2
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    I think after England and India are , Australia are up there. They gave the experience and they know how to handle the pressure of winning big games. They have a world class bowling attack, Smith,Warner ,Finch is a gun top 3 when on form.

    Posters who think New Zealand have a better chance of winning the WC than Australia make me laugh. When it matters Australia always beat NZ, I don't see that changing here.

    Australia will beat Sri Lanka,West Indies,Bangladesh,Afghanistan,and Pakistan. They should beat 1 of NZ or South Africa. That will be enough for them to get to the semis.

  3. #3
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    I back Australia too. I expect them to go all the way (assuming Smithy and warner play) Not that Smith is a great ODI batsman. But he is a decent skipper compared to others.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnaveen1980 View Post
    I back Australia too. I expect them to go all the way (assuming Smithy and warner play) Not that Smith is a great ODI batsman. But he is a decent skipper compared to others.
    Smith is a big game player. I back him over Kohli or anyone if its Semi final or final.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by shah_1 View Post
    Smith is a big game player. I back him over Kohli or anyone if its Semi final or final.
    I said the same thing in another thread and there were so many triggered posters! Hope that doesn't happen here....


    Politics trumps intelligence (pun intended).

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by shah_1 View Post
    Smith is a big game player. I back him over Kohli or anyone if its Semi final or final.
    That is debatable with flimsy evidence. But i back Australia as a team. Someone always steps up.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hasan123 View Post
    I think after England and India are , Australia are up there. They gave the experience and they know how to handle the pressure of winning big games. They have a world class bowling attack, Smith,Warner ,Finch is a gun top 3 when on form.

    Posters who think New Zealand have a better chance of winning the WC than Australia make me laugh. When it matters Australia always beat NZ, I don't see that changing here.

    Australia will beat Sri Lanka,West Indies,Bangladesh,Afghanistan,and Pakistan. They should beat 1 of NZ or South Africa. That will be enough for them to get to the semis.
    Exactly.

    Ind, Eng and Aus should easily make it in the top 4.

    The consistent one from Pak, NZ, SA will be fourth. Yet again the question arises: will Pak be able to put in those good performances consistently? The new format will be a huge challenge for us. No flukes will work.


    "You aren't a failure if you fail, you are a failure if you don't get up to try again" - Imran Khan.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prince of Pakistan View Post
    Exactly.

    Ind, Eng and Aus should easily make it in the top 4.

    The consistent one from Pak, NZ, SA will be fourth. Yet again the question arises: will Pak be able to put in those good performances consistently? The new format will be a huge challenge for us. No flukes will work.
    Pakistan seem to have the wool over South Africa in ICC tournaments. We have struggled against NZ in recent years. Those 2 games will probably decide out fate.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hasan123 View Post
    Pakistan seem to have the wool over South Africa in ICC tournaments. We have struggled against NZ in recent years. Those 2 games will probably decide out fate.
    Yes, but that's the tricky part of this format. One win against a good side will not be enough. Pak will need to beat Bangla, WI as well which has not been that easy for us in pressure situations.

    In the past it was beating one minnow side in the group and then a do or die situation in the quarters and semis.


    "You aren't a failure if you fail, you are a failure if you don't get up to try again" - Imran Khan.

  10. #10
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    Aussies have experience of handling knockout pressure situations. 5 WC wins under there belts.

  11. #11
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    I doubt it. Smith and Warner will be under a lot of pressure. Won't be easy to carry the whole team.


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