Australia great Ricky Ponting, commentating in the ongoing Australia-India Test series, was lauded for his brilliant prediction of Prithvi Shaw’s dismissal in the Adelaide Test, but also copped criticism after his prophetic on-air observation.
Ponting almost exactly predicted Shaw’s dismissal moments before Mitchell Starc castled him for a second-ball duck, leaving India at 0-1 in the opening over of the first Test.
While Shaw, partnering Mayank Agarwal at the top, readied himself to face Starc, Ponting said: “He has got a little chink in his armour, I think it’s the ball that does come back into him. Very comfortable playing the ball away from his body, he does get his head in the line of the ball, plays under his eyes, but he doesn’t commit his front foot to the line of the ball.”
As Starc began his run-up, Ponting continued: “Quite often leaves a big gap between the bat and pad, and that’s where the Aussies will target. Starc will try to swing one back through the gate.”
As soon as Ponting finished his sentence, Starc bowled a half-volley that Shaw tried to have a poke at, but only managed to find an inside edge, sending the ball onto his own stumps.
As expected, Twitter was filled with comments lauding Ponting’s brilliant reading of the game.
— DK (@DineshKarthik) December 17, 2020
Shaw getting Bowled just as Ricky Ponting was saying he has a flaw in his technique that makes him susceptible to getting bowled through the gate! Ricky the Psychic!" Also his coach at Delhi Capitals! #INDvsAUS @BCCI @imVkohli @SonySportsIndia
— Ashutosh (@ashu1512) December 17, 2020
— Hemant (@hemantbuch) December 17, 2020
I'm sorry, but Ricky Ponting is a bloody marvel. "Shaw has a weakness with the ball coming back in". Bowled off an inside edge. Best commentator in cricket by far #AUSvIND
— Chris Cox (@CoxyJindas) December 17, 2020
Ricky Ponting take a bow. He says Prithvi Shaw has a weakness to the ball coming into him and Starc promptly bowls him though the gate #IndiavsAustralia
— Chris de Kretser (@crjdek) December 17, 2020
— Arun Gopalakrishnan (@statanalyst) December 17, 2020
As brilliant as the prediction was, it didn’t go down too well with a section of Twitter, who couldn’t help but point out that Shaw was actually under Ponting’s tutelage for the better part of the last two months. Ponting is the head coach at IPL team Delhi Capitals, and Shaw endured a disappointing second half of the 2020 edition, managing three ducks in the last six innings.
Ponting saying in an interview that he and Clarke used to practice with small bottles placed just behind their feet on the leg side to ensure that their feet did not move towards leg when facing fast bowling. Seems like Ponting did not pass on that drill to Shaw."#INDvAUS
— Bhavesh Gujrati (@BhaviLivelife) December 17, 2020
Ponting could have helped Shaw strengthen his batting against that incoming delivery during IPL as his coach. But instead chose to do nothing about it, and also dropped him for most of the games and destroyed his confidence. True Australian🙏#INDvAUS #PrithviShaw @DelhiCapitals https://t.co/9BHkNaC5aj
— Amey Singh (@Amazing1999ask) December 17, 2020
He knew everything about Indian players…He coached DD…his responsibility to fix this or DD over paying him
— Akashj724 (@magicalgoretzka) December 17, 2020
ponting knows everything about shaw and pant but he wont work on their technical flaws when he coaches delhi daredevils great
— ameernandanapu (@ameer_395) December 17, 2020
Couldn’t he correct this flaw while being his coach at Delhi Capitals?
— Vikrant Gupta (@vikrantgupta73) December 17, 2020