Plenty to offer as batsman and captain, says Ponting


“I still think I've got a lot to offer the team, as a batsman and as a captain and as a leader,” Ponting told reporters at Sydney airport.

“If it ends up getting to the point where I'm not the captain, my hunger and determination to keep playing this game are as good as ever.”

His captaincy has come under scrutiny in sports-mad Australia, which has basked in its cricket team's dominance of the game for the better part of two decades.

Ponting is the first Australia captain in more than a century to lose two Ashes series in England after the hosts won the fifth Test in London by 197 runs on Sunday, giving Andrew Strauss's team a 2-1 series victory.

“I've got to worry about the next 12 or 18 months and see if all that hunger or commitment is still there,” added Ponting.

“Right at the moment it most definitely is. It's probably higher right now than ever before. I would love to go back and give it (the Ashes in England) one more crack. Who knows, 2013 might be something achievable.”

The 34-year-old said he was pleased with the public support he had received from his players, Cricket Australia and the selection panel after the Test series. “Leaders are always judged on results,” he said. “I learned that in 2005, and I expect it's going to be similar this time around. I can understand those points of view being out there. The pleasing thing for me is I'm getting some support from Cricket Australia and the selectors as well.”

Ponting, who is home for 10 days before he returns for the final four one-day internationals in England, said his desire to continue playing was high even if the selectors decided to split the captaincy or continue to pick him just as a senior player.
“Could I play on without being captain? Absolutely,” Ponting said.

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