Aussies would prefer to play India in the final

Last Updated: Tue, Feb 21, 2012 03:53 hrs

The Australian selectors, yesterday, made it clear that your reputation doesn't matter when it comes to the national selection. Their decision to drop Ricky Ponting makes this very clear. At the beginning of the Test series against India, there were a lot of questions asked on Ricky Ponting's selection, but he managed to silence his critics by being instrumental in Australia's 4-0 triumph against India.

But the ODI tri-series that also saw him return as captain in two games, has been awful for him. Just 18 runs in five outings spoke about his slump in form in the shorter format of the game.

The great player that he is, I feel for him, and he will be very disappointed but that's the harsh reality. It's never easy to write off a sportsman like him but at the same time what common sense says is that at this age it would be practically impossible for him to make a comeback. The selectors would look to build a team with a focus on the next World Cup, which will be hosted by Australia and New Zealand.

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Over the past few days, there was a lot of talk on who should have led in the absence of Michael Clarke and the selectors had then decided it would be Ponting. David Warner is the vice captain, but I feel he isn't ready to lead the national side yet.

Making him the vice-captain is about grooming him for the job, making him a part of team meetings and discussions. He himself is struggling with his ODI form and I feel the right decision was made. He should be allowed to concentrate on his own game, and in the process also look to cement a permanent place in the ODI side.

India play Sri Lanka today at the Gabba in a very important game. There is very little between the sides and the contest should be a good one. The comprehensive win on Sunday makes Australians the favourites to be in the finals and by the look of things, they will prefer India to Sri Lanka as opponents in the finals, as the latter have troubled them more in this series.

The batting on bouncy wickets continues to be a big problem for the Indians and we again saw it on Sunday. Rohit Sharma hasn't come good so far and Suresh Raina has looked pretty ordinary, so I would any day have a Virender Sehwag playing in the team. Hopefully, we will get to see him play today. If he does, it will be a good contest between him and Lasith Malinga.

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