'Ponting still the best man for job'

'Ponting still the best man for job'

Buchanan believes beleaguered skipper Ponting, however, needs fewer duties to worry about before he can take his team back to the one-day game's summit.England sealed a 3-1 series win this month with each victory by an innings as the Australians slipped to fifth in the Test rankings after over a decade of world dominance, losing six of their last eight tests and six of the last 12 one-day games.

Buchanan, though, pointed out they are still the world's top-ranked team in 50-over cricket and believes they will reach a fifth straight final at the Feb 19-April 2 World Cup, to be held in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

"The Ashes is finished with," Buchanan, 57, said in a phone interview."The World Cup is a one-off tournament and it really doesn't matter what happens in Australia or other lead-up games elsewhere around the world."The conditions they will experience will be different; they will be facing new teams every third day, so it's now just about what is required to win the World Cup."

Buchanan still supports Ponting as captain and recommends a more selfish approach to help rediscover the kind of batting form that saw him crack a scintillating unbeaten 140 from just 121 balls in the 2003 World Cup final against India.

"He's the best man for the job as long as physically he maintains his skills -- there is no question of his batting ability," Buchanan said."He has been allowed to take on way too much in this so-called rebuilding phase. His principal skills are in and around the team, leading on the field and leading with the bat,” he added.