Sydney, Aug 14 (IANS) Former Australian cricketer and Indian Premier League (IPL) side Delhi Capitals’ head coach Ricky Ponting feels the rescheduled Indian Premier League (IPL) in the UAE in September-October can help his country’s cricketers prepare better for the ICC T20 World Cup later this year.
Austria have suffered stunning reversals in the white-ball series in the West Indies and Bangladesh, losing the five-match T20I series in the Caribbean 1-4 before going on to lose the T20I series against Bangladesh by an identical margin.
Ponting felt it was important for Australian cricketers to “get back into the groove” ahead of the T20 World Cup and the Ashes series, especially since players like David Warner, Pat Cummins, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Steve Smith, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson and Daniel Sams had all opted out of the West Indies and Bangladesh series.
“Those guys that haven’t played for three or four months now, they need to get back into the groove of playing high-quality cricket against the best players in the world,” Ponting said on SEN radio in a chat with Australian Test skipper Tim Paine.
“No doubt it’s their best preparation to be in those exact conditions, playing in probably the strongest domestic T20 tournament in the world. All the best players in the world will be there … and I’m not just saying it because I want some of the Australian players there at the Delhi Capitals,” explained Ponting.
Steve Smith has had to miss the West Indies and Bangladesh tours with a left elbow injury, and has been quoted as saying that he would want to prioritise the Ashes over the ICC T20 World Cup.