Clarke rules out coup on Ponting

Published: Friday, August 28, 2009, 13:56 [IST]
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Clarke rules out coup on Ponting

Edinburgh : Australia's Test captain-in-waiting Michael Clarke has no plans to mount a coup against incumbent Ricky Ponting.

Clarke has dismissed the notion of captaining Ricky Ponting in the Australian Test side.

''He is our leader, and has been for my whole career, and in my opinion he''s certainly one of the best leaders I've played under,'' the Sydney Morning Herald quoted Clarke, as saying.

''I'm blessed to get this opportunity when he's not here to get that fill-in role, but Punter's our leader and I'm more than happy to continue playing under him,'' he added.

Clarke will lead Australia against Scotland on Friday, and will hold the reins until Ponting returns to Britain for the last four of seven one-dayers against England.

On the idea of splitting the captaincy so that he would control the team for one-dayers and Twenty20s full-time, Clarke said: ''I see Ricky as our leader, I don't think it's something we have to worry about at this stage.

''Punt's playing fantastic cricket in all forms of the game, I think his series in the Ashes was very good once again. To me, we don't have to worry about that because Ricky is our captain,''he said.

Clarke believes singling out Ponting for blame after the series loss is grossly unfair.

''The one thing Punt''s always said is that it''s part of the responsibility as a leader and as a senior player, we are going to be more responsible if we don't perform,''Clarke said.

''That's another great strength of Ricky''s: he does cop it on the chin. There are times he does cop a lot of flak but he cops it on the chin. He's always positive around the team. He never lets that get in the way of his leadership," Clarke said.

Clarke added that the entire squad had accepted responsibility for the 2-1 loss to England, despite Ponting shouldering the blame.


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