Melbourne:The growing clamour for Ricky Ponting's ouster as captain of the Australian team notwithstanding, Cricket Australia (CA) chief executive James Sutherland still backs the veteran to resume his role as skipper after coming back from injury.
Insisting that Ponting should continue as a leader, Sutherland said the board had not discussed changing the captaincy for any series after the Ashes.
"There's no question of looking beyond the immediacy of this Test match...and (Ponting's) return ahead of the World Cup, which we've obviously flagged as being incredibly important, which is why he's being wrapped in cotton wool from now," Sutherland was quoted as saying by 'The Age'.
Even Clarke, who has been named as the stand-in-skipper for the final Ashes Test to be held in Sydney from January 2, also made it clear yesterday that he would never lead a side with Ponting in it.
Earlier, a board unanimously agreed to a recommendation from the selection panel of Andrew Hilditch, Greg Chappell, David Boon and Jamie Cox, to appoint Clarke as captain for the Sydney Test in the absence of Ponting.
Ponting, who had fractured the little finger on his left hand while attempting a slip catch during the third Ashes Test, will undergo surgery so that he could recover in time to lead the team in the World Cup, staring from February 19.