Ponting asks England to show some sympathy

Australians play down Gillespie's terror fears

Opening batsman Justin Langer felt the England players were out of order in their lack of visible concern after captain Ricky Ponting had been struck in the face while batting on the opening morning at Lord's and has been on record in criticising their apparent lack of courtesy.

"When Ricky got cut under an eye, I spoke to some of the England players during the drinks break and said 'this isn't a war, this is a game'," Langer admitted afterwards.

Ponting yesterday seemed unsure whether to castigate Langer for showing weakness in the face of aggression or to agree with him. In the end, he did both but gave a clear message that he saw England's behaviour at Lord's as outside the spirit of the game.

"I was a bit disappointed to read that Justin had said what he did," Ponting said. "It was the first morning of the game after a build-up lasting 12 months so the cricket was very intense. I didn't expect any sympathy because as far as I am concerned incidents like that are just part of the game.

"But from a personal point of view, I would always ask a player how he was after an incident like that. While we were in New Zealand, Brett Lee hit one of their guys quite badly and I was the first to go up to him and ask if he was okay"

Ponting confirmed that Australia will field an unchanged line-up when play begins at Edgbaston today, Jason Gillespie's improved performance in last weekend's three-day match at Worcester having secured his place ahead of Michael Kasprowicz, despite the latter claiming five second-innings wickets.

Not surprisingly, Glenn McGrath is central to Ponting's tactics towards Michael Vaughan. "I've never seen anyone bat as well against us as he did in Australia," Ponting said, "but he's not been able to reproduce that form against us this summer and it is up to us to make sure he doesn't get the opportunity. I don't think Vaughan is as comfortable facing Glenn as he is some other bowlers and I'd think once he comes out to bat it will not be long before Glenn is bowling."

Kevin Pietersen is another England player the Australians show particular respect, and Ponting remarked: "The first Test has forced us to have a bit more of a think about the way we are going to bowl to him. The plans we had for him at Lord's did not work but all our bowlers are pretty clear about what we are going to do this time."

Ricky Ponting yesterday played down any fears Australia might have over security in the wake of the London bombings, in spite of comments from Jason Gillespie that suggested the tour might be abandoned if there were further explosions.

"We had a few meetings about the issue early in the tour in London," he said. "At the time of the explosions, the transport systems were the biggest issue for a lot of us, particularly because a lot of the players had families and so forth with them.

"But we were being briefed on a daily basis and as far as the team is concerned, it is an area in which we will be guided by the experts."

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
British musician Mark Ronson arrives for the UK premiere of the film 'Mortdecai'
music
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
Sport
footballBrighton vs Arsenal match report
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch has spoken about the lack of opportunities for black British actors in the UK
film
News
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us