Lawson says time for Ponting to hand over captaincy to Clarke to focus on batting

Friday, October 15, 2010

MELBOURNE - Former Australian fast bowler Geoff Lawson has asked the Australian selectors to dump Ricky Ponting as captain before the Ashes, after a series whitewash at the hands of India, and replace him with vice captain Michael Clarke.

He said Ponting, 35, had now lost five series, and relieving him of the captaincy would allow him to focus more on his batting.

“I mean he’s now lost five series, it may be time to say, ‘Look mate, we’ve got Michael Clarke ready to go with a nice fresh young mind. He can be the captain and you focus on your batting and try to restore yourself to the level we know you’re capable’,” he said.

Lawson told ABC Radio such a move had done wonders for India and Sachin Tendulkar’s career.

“Ricky’s still batting reasonably - he got two scores of 70 in (the last) Test match,” The Daily Telegraph quoted Lawson, as saying.

“The difference is that Tendulkar got a couple of hundred and then backed it up with a 50-odd not out, and obviously he can focus on those big scores (without the burden of being skipper).

“You’ve got to look at the way Ponting is batting and think, mentally, he can’t concentrate for long enough,” Lawson said

Lawson’s comments come after spin legend Shane Warne publicly criticised Ponting for field placements in Australia’s seven-wicket loss to India in Bangalore. (ANI)

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