Saturday, 26 September 2009

Ponting: 'We must do better'


Defending champions Australia need to improve after their 50-run victory over a second-string West Indies, captain Ricky Ponting said.
"We all know that we need to play better when we take on India in a couple of days' time," Ponting said, saying he was concerned that his side had conceded 36 extras as they bowled out West Indies for 225 on Saturday.
"Today we had a few too many extras. We expected the new ball to do a bit more for us than it did and the bowlers probably got a little bit carried away with that."
Australia, the defending champions, continue their Group A campaign against India in Centurion on Monday.
Ponting was pleased with his batsmen's application on a wicket that provided uneven bounce and seam movement, particularly after Australia had been put into bat by West Indies captain Floyd Reifer.
"It was hard work early. The ball seamed around a lot in the morning and we ended up batting on a pretty difficult wicket. To get that sort of total, I thought the batsman did a really good job and Mitch finished things off really well for us," Ponting said in reference to all-rounder Mitchell Johnson's unbeaten 73 off 47 balls.
Australia were struggling on 171 for seven in the 40th over but Johnson's knock, together with a 70-run eighth-wicket partnership he shared with Brett Lee, enabled Australia to post a competitive 275 for eight.
Vital
"Those runs at the end of our innings ended up being pretty vital in the game," Ponting said.
Reifer was also impressed with Johnson's efforts.
"We had Australia 170-odd for seven but the game was taken away from us in the last 10 overs. Mitchell Johnson played well and Brett Lee also played a pretty good innings," he said.
"Chasing 275 and being 124 for two, I thought we had a good chance to win the game. But we needed one of our top batters to carry on and get a good score."
Two West Indies batsmen, Andre Fletcher and Travis Dowlin, scored half-centuries but were both dismissed with only 170 runs on the board.
The West Indies will complete their Champions Trophy campaign when they play India at the Wanderers on Wednesday.

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