Confidence returning for Australian batsman Ricky Ponting


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The Independent Online

Ricky Ponting warned India his confidence has returned following his first century in two years in Australia's victory in the second Test in Sydney and claimed there were more to come.

The former Australia captain hit 134 to rack up his first ton since scoring 209 against New Zealand in January 2010.

And the 37-year-old was not concerned by suggestions from India bowler Zaheer Khan that he had lost his natural flair and become a "grinder" of a batsman.

"There's more than one way to skin a cat," Ponting said ahead of the third Test in Perth which starts on Friday.

"You probably say the same thing about Sachin (Tendulkar) as well, the way that he's been able to accumulate runs over the years and someone like (Jacques) Kallis and (Rahul) Dravid.

"I've had to work really hard with my game the last few months and I felt that I made a bit of progress the last few weeks.

"I think the biggest challenge for me was the technical flaws that I've been working on (and) getting enough quality time in the middle and starting to feel that bit more free again.

"For the first 30 or 40 runs in Sydney last week, probably, I was still battling myself a little bit, but I think the start of day two was probably as free as I've felt in a long time.

"The way I moved, hit most of the balls in the middle, I might have played and missed one ball I think on that second morning. So when you're making as few mistakes as I did for the second part of that innings you can start to take some confidence from that."

And Ponting insisted he was determined to push now for more centuries, having recorded only one at the WACA, 197 against Pakistan in 1999.

"Confidence is everything in our game as we all know and understand," he said.

"But I'm not going to rest on one hundred.

"I've said it for a while now that if I got to those three figures then hopefully it's the start of something big for me again, so that's the way I'm looking at it.

"I train the same way this week, I trained hard again the last couple of days and I'll get everything done tomorrow that I need to get down to give myself the best chance to perform again.

"We're certainly not resting on our laurels of what we've done as individual players or what we've achieved as a team so far.

"Individual players have got room for improvement and the teams got room for improvement and we're not going to rest until we're at our peak."