Australian veteran Ricky Ponting was dismissed for 8 in his final Test innings today (2012/12/03) at the WACA, bringing the curtain down on a 17-year career that saw him become the second-greatest run scorer in history.
He finishes his career with 13,378 Test runs at 51.85, including 41 centuries, while sharing the record for Test appearances for his country with his predecessor as captain, Steve Waugh. Ponting is behind only India’s Sachin Tendulkar on the all-time list of leading Test run scorers.
After being made Australian captain in 2004, Ponting went on to become one of the country’s greatest batsmen. But pressure had mounted on him after scoring a combined total of just 20 runs in his past three innings against South Africa.
Ponting, 37, equaled the record of 168 Test matches set by Steve Waugh with his final appearance. In his retirement announcement last week he pointed out that Perth was an appropriate place to end his Test career as it was where it started 17 years ago against Sri Lanka. Despite all of his success for Australia, Ponting has had his share of setbacks.
Earlier in his career, he was stood down for three matches during the 1998-99 one-day series after he was involved in a fight outside a Kings Cross hotel in Sydney. Ponting became the first Australian captain to lose three Ashes series, and on the back of the 3-1 home series loss to England in 2010-11 pressure was on him to step down as captain.
He did just that after Australia was knocked out in the quarter-finals of the 2011 World Cup in India, resigning as Test and one-day captain. Ponting endorsed Michael Clarke as his successor and signaled his intention to keep playing.
He played his last one-day match for Australia in February against India in Brisbane before being dropped by Australian selectors.