Ricky ready for the fresh battle

Brisbane: This time last year, Ricky Ponting's illustrious career was at an all time low.

But it's not that bad this season. In fact, Ponting is confident the hamstring niggle that required him to be withdrawn from Tasmania's Sheffield Shield match on Friday won't affect his chances of playing at the Gabba, in the upcoming series against South Africa.

On Tuesday, Ponting batted in the nets on Tuesday. "I did everything that was required today. I've been pretty confident from the last three days… I didn't do any running today. I was limited with what I could do in the nets but that was just precautionary.

"With two days to go training-wise before the Test, I'll ramp things up, do a little bit of running on Wednesday and batting against the bowlers and then top things up on Thursday… But so far I'm very positive," the former Australia captain was quoted as saying.

Speaking about his preparation, Ponting said: "I'm doing things a little bit differently at training now, with the way that I train and prepare. Some of the drills that I'm working on have made me feel a lot better balanced at the crease and certainly not getting hit on the pad as much as I was 12 months ago.

"My pre-ball movements were a little bit earlier than what they normally were. I was trying to move early to give myself a little bit more time but it was actually having a detrimental effect. I was actually moving too early and locking off and not being able to move again after that," he explained.

Looking back at his off-form last season, he said: "There's no doubt it was a lowlight… I was training really hard and not getting the results I was after. At that stage where I was batting we needed to be getting results if the team was going to win games."


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