Sehwag, pitch denied us a win: Ponting

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Australia skipper Ricky Ponting believes Adelaide's lifeless track and Virender Sehwag's counter-attacking ton thwarted the home side's bid for win.

Updated: February 01, 2008 07:33 IST
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Australia skipper Ricky Ponting believes Adelaide Oval's lifeless track and Virender Sehwag's counter-attacking ton thwarted the home side's bid for an unexpected win against India.

Ponting said Australia had a slight chance of forcing a result but Sehwag's 13th ton put paid to such hopes.

"Going into lunch we had a slim chance. But Sehwag being out there means the scoring keeps ticking over. He kept the run-rate going," Ponting said.

The host captain was also disappointed with the track, which had little to offer to the pacers.

"It really offered very little assistance. I've been really proud of the way we hung in there. Our bowling group has manfully handled the workload."

The batsmen too came in for rich praise from the captain.

"I said before the Test that it was important how we batted in the first innings here and I am happy the batters knuckled down. It gave us a glimmer of hope to win this Test," Ponting said.

Though Ponting said India got its rightful place as the world number two team in the world, he felt they would soon find themselves in the same rebuilding process like Australia faced after the retirement of a number of legendary players.

"It's funny, the way we've lost four or five of our best players, India could have a similar phase. They would lose their top players in the next 12 months and it would be interesting to see how they rebuild, only time would tell," said Ponting after his side had secured a 2-1 win here on Monday.

Retirement list

The latest in the retirement list is Ponting's deputy Adam Gilchrist who quit Test cricket today and exit from the ODI scene as well after the forthcoming tri-series.

Ponting, however, wasn't worried that his side could struggle to win Test matches with so many great players hanging up their boots.

"Right throughout the summer, we have coped well. The way we began it against Sri Lanka was exceptional. Phil Jacques is developing, Mitchell Johnson is coming along very well.

"It's hard to know how well we are playing. We have enough talent to maintain our number one ranking in Test cricket. We are still winning our big moments and able to adapt and adjust."

India ran Australia close in the series and it made Ponting wonder if so many dropped catches was the reason for it.

"It's strange, I remember in 2005 Ashes, we didn't catch very well. I can assure you it's not been for want of training. We have intensified our practice for catching in the last few weeks," he said.

Ponting's back has troubled him for the last two days and there is now a question mark whether he would be available for the Twenty20 match in Brisbane.

"It might be a battle for me to be fit for the Twenty20 game. Last couple of days have been painful but there are still two days to go. Hopefully, I would be available," the skipper said.

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