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Last Updated: Saturday, 4 November 2006, 08:27 GMT
Ponting refuses to dwell on Ashes
Ricky Ponting
Ponting faces West Indies in Sunday's Champions Trophy final
Australia's Ricky Ponting insists he never questioned his credentials as either captain or batsman after the Ashes defeat in 2005.

"Why would I?" he said. "I had no reason to, that Ashes series is a long way gone," said Ponting, named world cricket player of the year on Sunday.

"I don't think we will make the mistakes we made last time - we will be very hard to beat.

"I know when this Ashes series starts we will be a better team."

Australia's chance to regain the famous urn begins in Brisbane on 23 November, although they must first face West Indies in Sunday's one-day Champions Trophy final.

Mark Butcher

Losing an Ashes campaign for the first time since 1986/87 clearly stung Australia, who have won 11 of 12 Tests since.

Ponting was passed over for the captain of the year honour in favour of Mahela Jayawardene of Sri Lanka.

He was targeted by England during their 2-1 series victory, hitting a below-par 359 runs from nine innings.

An incident during the fourth Test at Trent Bridge, when a frustrated Ponting shouted at the England balcony after being run out by a substitute fielder, was one of the key points of the series.

"We didn't perform the way we would have liked and probably I didn't score the runs I would have liked to during the Ashes," he admitted.

"It's important for us to move on, to move forward from that; that is me as a player, me as a captain and the rest of the team as well.

"We have managed to do that very well, we've actually played better cricket as a result of that."

It's an honour in one way for someone with over 500 wickets to target you

England's Alastair Cook

England's touring party arrives in Australia at around 0710 local time on Sunday (2010 GMT Saturday).

And batsman Alastair Cook is looking forward to facing the twin threat of Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne when the series begins.

McGrath has already targeted the left-hander, who has scored 761 runs in his first nine Tests.

"It's an honour in one way for someone with over 500 wickets to target you," Cook told the Essex CCC website.

"Shane Warne is another great bowler so I have to respect him but if he bowls a bad ball I have to put it away."





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