Aussies should play in rescheduled IPL: Ponting - GulfToday

Aussies should play in rescheduled IPL: Ponting


Ricky Ponting. File

Former Australian cricketer and Indian Premier League (IPL) side Delhi Capitals’ head coach Ricky Ponting feels the rescheduled Indian Premier League (IPL) in the UAE in September-October can help his country’s cricketers prepare better for the ICC T20 World Cup later this year.

Australia have suffered stunning reversals in the white-ball series in the West Indies and Bangladesh, losing the five-match T20I series in the Caribbean 1-4 before going on to lose the T20I series against Bangladesh by an identical margin.

Ponting felt it was important for Australian cricketers to “get back into the groove” ahead of the T20 World Cup and the Ashes series, especially since players like David Warner, Pat Cummins, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Steve Smith, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson and Daniel Sams had all opted out of the West Indies and Bangladesh series.

“Those guys that haven’t played for three or four months now, they need to get back into the groove of playing high-quality cricket against the best players in the world,” Ponting said on SEN radio in a chat with Australian Test skipper Tim Paine.

“No doubt it’s their best preparation to be in those exact conditions, playing in probably the strongest domestic T20 tournament in the world. All the best players in the world will be there … and I’m not just saying it because I want some of the Australian players there at the Delhi Capitals,” explained Ponting.

Ponting also said that the ‘lack of knowhow and ‘skill’ was the reason for the team’s dismal show in the five-match T20 International series against Bangladesh which concluded recently.

Bangladesh won the series 4-1, with Australia dishing out one of the worst performances in recent history

Steve Smith has had to miss the West Indies and Bangladesh tours with a left elbow injury, and has been quoted as saying that he would want to prioritise the Ashes over the ICC T20 World Cup.

Sharjah cricket stadium announces major upgrades ahead of IPL: Recognised globally for being one of the world’s most exciting cricketing venues, the iconic Sharjah cricket stadium has announced major upgrades in the runup to hosting 10 matches including an eliminator and a qualifier when IPL 2021 heads to the UAE next month.

The newly relaid wicket block will now accommodate six pitches in the centre, including four broadcasting and two practice pitches.

They are currently building a new practice facility with four turf wickets and four astro-turf wickets to accommodate multiple teams during practice sessions. These will be ready in time for the IPL.

“Sharjah’s atmosphere or as we like to call it the ‘Sharjah magic’ is what differentiates the stadium from any other cricketing venue in the UAE. This was no more evident than at last year’s edition when we played host to some of the most exciting moments of the IPL,” said Khalaf Bukhatir, Managing Director of Bukhatir Group and CEO of Sharjah Cricket Stadium.

“In recent years we have invested in all elements to ensure that players and spectators alike have an even better match day experience. We still don’t know if we are welcoming cricket fans into the stadium this IPL, but we are certainly ready and looking forward to hosting some world-class cricket in a world-class, safe and secure environment.”

Sharjah is scheduled to host a blockbuster first game between Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore on Sept.24th and will also host Qualifier 2 (October 11) and the Eliminator (October 13) as part of their 10 matches.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has also confirmed that the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 will be staged in the UAE and Oman from Oct.17 to Nov.14, 2021.

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