There are hardly few people who have had the privilege to watch the two Australian greats - Sir Donald Bradman and Ricky Ponting play, while 84-year-old cricketing Encyclopaedia Ken is one of them. Talking about the two Australian greats, the old man also termed Ricky Ponting as the next Don Bradman.
The 84-year-old cricketing encyclopaedia Ken, remembers every innings of Ponting and Don Bradman, and narrated the same during the 3aw.com.au's morning chat show on Friday.
Ricky Ponting, who announced his retirement from Test cricket on Thursday, everyone have been talking about the Australian great and the most common question that has been raised during any discussion has been - Is Ponting greater than Don Bradman?
Though he has been one of the Australian greats, he cannot be termed greater than Bradman, while he can become the next Bradman.
Ken, remembers the day he saw Bradman bat and compared the same with Ponting. Though he admitted that Bradman was the best, without doubt he said Punter would follow Bradman, as the next best Australian batsman.
"I saw Bradman play. I saw him bat on New Years Day in 1947. He made 79 and (went out) LBW to Norman Yardley and then made 49 in the second innings,"
"But I saw him play against India (in the Summer of 1947-48), he made 132 Not Out that day, he batted with Lindsey Hassett, and it was the most beautiful batting I've ever seen" Ken said.
When asked him if Ricky Ponting was the next best, Ken admitted that the former Australian skipper can be the next Bradman, and lauded the stylish right-hander's contribution to the game.
"Indeed he is. He has been a marvellous player and it is just a shame that his form has fallen away over the last 2 or 3 matches or perhaps a little bit longer," Ken was quoted as saying by an Australian site, www.3aw.com
Having represented Australia in 52 Tests, Don Bradman had recorded an average of 99.94 and collected 6996 runs with a highest score of 334 which included 29 hundreds and 13 half centuries, as Bradman's average is considered to be the best till date.
Ponting on the other hand, who also announced his retirement from Tests, has played 167 Tests (excluding the last one against South Africa that started on Nov 30, 2012) and has scored 13.336 runs so far which includes 41 centuries and 62 half centuries, and a highest score of 257.
Though he has played extremely well and has registered many records, he cannot be considered to be greater than Sir Donald Bradman.