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Tributes as Ricky Ponting resigns as Australia captain

Ricky Ponting
Ponting's last game in charge was the World Cup quarter-final defeat to India

Ricky Ponting has announced his resignation as Australia's Test and one-day international captain.

The 36-year-old, who took over the job from Steve Waugh, has indicated he wants to continue playing for the team as a batsman.

Australia were the pre-eminent team in both forms of the game for most of his spell in charge, achieving a record-equalling 16 consecutive Test wins between December 2005 and January 2008.

Here, some leading figures pay tribute to one of the sport's all-time greats.

FORMER AUSTRALIA CAPTAIN ALLAN BORDER

"It's a little bit sad when a player of that calibre and quality decides to give away the captaincy.

"I get the feeling that the burden of captaincy in recent times may have been weighing heavily on his mind. The fact that he's given the captaincy might just bring him up to play some of his best cricket over the next couple of years.

"Despite stepping down as skipper, I think he still has to be in the side and I don't think it will be an issue at all if he continues to play as a batsman under Michael Clarke or another captain's leadership.

"Is it a problem for a former captain to play under a new leader? We always used to pick the team first and pick the best candidate to captain the team. I think that's subtly changed over the years - now we tend to pick the captain and pick the team.

"In my mind, he's still our best player, as such he deserves to be picked in the Australian teams going forward."

AUSTRALIA WICKETKEEPER BRAD HADDIN

"The best thing about Ricky Ponting is no matter how he's going or how he's feeling personally, his involvement in the team and his demeanour and everything around the group doesn't change.

"He's a very consistent personality and he's a very consistent leader."

FORMER AUSTRALIA BATSMAN AND TEAM-MATE MARK WAUGH

"He's always been a player who's put the team before himself... Probably the right decision.

"As far as playing on without being captain, why not? We've seen guys like Sachin Tendulkar probably being in the best form of his career probably into his late 30s and Ricky's still very fit and obviously very hungry, so he's got a lot to offer just as a player and as a backup to Michael Clarke with regard to tactics and bringing younger players on."

FORMER ENGLAND CAPTAIN MICHAEL VAUGHAN ON TWITTER

"Respect to Ricky Ponting. Never easy giving up something that you love doing. Lots of runs still in him though. Bowlers beware."

AUSTRALIAN CRICKETERS ASSOCIATION PRESIDENT AND FORMER TEAM-MATE MICHAEL KASPROWICZ

"Ricky has been a magnificent team leader who has excelled in all forms of the game in all kinds of conditions.

"On countless occasions he has carved an innings of strength to truly lead from the front on the big stage and was an inspirational figure to play under."

FORMER AUSTRALIA ALL-ROUNDER BRENDON JULIAN

"I cannot remember the last time that an Australian captain didn't captain the side but continued on and played as well.

"I think it might be a bit difficult for Michael Clarke being captain in the side but also having the ex-captain in there as well."

BBC CRICKET CORRESPONDENT JONATHAN AGNEW ON TWITTER

"Good decision by Ricky P but rare/unique? for Aussies to have ex skipper in the ranks. Never said no to interview. Always honest in defeat."

CRICKET AUSTRALIA GENERAL MANAGER MICHAEL BROWN

"He'll play a very significant part in the rebuilding of Australian cricket and is handing it over at an appropriate time to his successor."

AUSTRALIA PRIME MINISTER JULIA GILLARD

"To play that kind of role for Australia is an enormous privilege and I know from talking to Ricky today that he has felt that privilege.

"He's our greatest batsman after [Don] Bradman. I think all of us would wish him well in whatever he chooses to do for the balance of his life."



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see also
Ponting resigns as Aussie captain
29 Mar 11 |  Australia
Ponting to consider future as captain
28 Mar 11 |  Cricket
India end Aussie World Cup reign
24 Mar 11 |  Cricket
Ponting dismisses retirement talk
23 Mar 11 |  Australia


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