Ashes: ‘They have let a very good opportunity slip’: Ponting criticises Australia

Australian legend Ricky Ponting has expressed his dissatisfaction with Australia’s batters for their failure to capitalize on the favorable batting conditions during the opening day of the fourth Ashes Test at Old Trafford and criticised their inability to convert good starts into substantial scores.

Australian legend Ricky Ponting criticised Australia’s batters for failing to take advantage of the ideal batting conditions on the first day of the fourth Ashes Test at Old Trafford. Ponting also criticised their inability to turn promising starts into significant scores.

Despite having advantageous conditions for batting, the Australian team missed out on making the most of the opportunity as they could only manage to reach 299/8 at stumps on Day 1, with their highest individual score reaching just 51 runs.

While Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, and Mitch Marsh crossed the 40-run mark, none of the other batters managed to capitalise on their starts and convert it into a significant innings.

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Labuschagne, in particular, achieved his first half-century of the series with a score of 51, but he was dismissed by a seemingly tame delivery from Moeen Ali.

Smith also missed a delivery from Mark Wood and was given out lbw for 41 runs. Head, after playing aggressively and scoring 48, was caught in the deep while attempting a big shot. Meanwhile, Marsh continued his good form, hitting a quick 51 off 60 balls, but unfortunately, he got out at a crucial moment for the team.

“I think Australia will be disappointed. They have let a very good opportunity slip. It has been pretty good batting conditions and their top score is 51,” Ponting said on Sky Sports at stumps.

“The average first innings score at this ground over the last 10 or 11 Test Matches has been 382. A number of the batsmen will be sitting back there, just thinking about their dismissals today, how they potentially let a great opportunity in this series just slip through their fingers,” he added.

The fourth Ashes Test holds immense significance for both teams. England is determined to level the series after facing defeats in the first two Tests, while Australia is eager to clinch the Ashes with a victory. Given the high stakes, the performance of the Australian batsmen in the upcoming days will be closely monitored and scrutinized by cricket enthusiasts and experts alike.

-IANS

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