Ponting turns focus towards Ashes after emphatic win

Australia 519-8 & 219-5 Pakistan 301 & 206: Australia won by 231 runs
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The Independent Online

Now who's obsessed with the Ashes? Minutes after completing a comprehensive 3-0 series victory over Pakistan, Ricky Ponting turned his attention to Australia's Test series against their oldest rivals yesterday. Given that England have, in the past, been upbraided by the Aussies for their obsession with the urn, it was an interesting role reversal to say the least.

Australia will play four more Tests in the 10 months before they begin the series against England in Brisbane in late November – two against New Zealand in March and two against Pakistan in England in July – but Ponting was happy to state that his team have now put last year's Ashes loss behind them.

"It's been a great series and a great summer for us," said Ponting, after Australia completed a 231-run victory over Pakistan in the third Test at Bellerive midway through day five. "There was a fair bit of conjecture coming into the summer after the end of the Ashes about where we were going with our Test cricket and I spelt things out pretty clearly to the team about where I thought we were going and I think we have improved a lot through the summer."

With Shane Watson named player of the series against Pakistan and Nathan Hauritz emerging as a genuine front-line spinner – after taking 18 wickets at 23.05 for the series, giving him 29 dismissals in six Tests for the summer, the equal highest along with Mitchell Johnson of any Australian bowler – Ponting believes he now has a settled team ready to reclaim the Ashes.

When asked if there were any areas in which he felt his side still needed to improve, Ponting said: "I don't think there are to tell the truth, no."

Bellerive scoreboard

Third Test, Hobart (Final day of five) Australia beat Pakistan by 231 runs

Australia won toss

AUSTRALIA First Innings 519-8 dec.

PAKISTAN First Innings 301.

AUSTRALIA Second Innings 219-5 dec.

PAKISTAN Second Innings: Overnight: 103-4

......... Runs......... 6s......... 4s......... Bls

K Manzoor c Haddin b Hauritz......... 77......... 0......... 8......... 239

S Malik c Haddin b Siddle......... 19......... 0......... 2......... 34

†S Ahmed c Clarke b Hauritz......... 5......... 0......... 0......... 27

M Aamer not out......... 30......... 0......... 4......... 109

U Gul c Clarke b Hauritz......... 0......... 0......... 0......... 2

M Asif b Johnson......... 0......... 0......... 0......... 4

D Kaneria b Siddle......... 1......... 0......... 0......... 14

Extras (b 10, lb 3, nb 1)......... 14

Total (86.2 overs)......... 206

Fall: 1-11, 2-29, 3-61, 4-83, 5-104, 6-123, 7-189, 8-191, 9-192, 10-206.

Bowling: D Bollinger 13-4-31-1, P Siddle 15.2-7-25-3, M Johnson 21-4-59-1, S Watson 17-4-38-2, N Hauritz 17-6-30-3, S Katich 3-1-10-0.

Umpires: E A R de Silva (S Lanka) & R E Koertzen (SA).

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