Ponting enters new field

Ponting and several members of the Australia squad, including Brett Lee, will watch Altrincham face a Manchester United XI in a pre-season friendly at the humble Moss Lane stadium in Cheshire.  Altrincham director Grahame Rowley confirmed that Ponting was gifted shares in the club last week by chairman Geoff Goodwin in recognition of his interest which dates back to before Australia's previous Ashes tour to England in 2005.

"Ricky has become very good friends with our chairman," Rowley told Reuters. "He is pretty clued up on football and even when he's back in Australia will be texting to say well done after a win or what happened if we lose.”

Goodwin runs the coach company that is contracted by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to provide transportation for any touring sides.

While Australia are here he is even using his own holiday to act as their own personal driver.

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