x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Ponting errs on the side of caution

The Australia captain Ricky Ponting has urged caution despite the fact his side ended their recent losing run with a 32-run victory over New Zealand.

The Australia captain Ricky Ponting has urged caution despite the fact his side ended their recent losing run with a 32-run victory over New Zealand in the Chappell-Hadlee trophy. Brad Haddin's first century at one-day international level left the Black Caps needing a daunting 302 to win but they were bowled out for 269 with Australia picking up their first victory following five consecutive defeats. The triumph keeps Australia in the five-match series as they now trail 2-1 but Ponting refused to get too excited by the result and insisted his team can still do better. "We can't afford to get carried away with one win ? it's our first win in five or six games ? and I still think there is some room for improvement," Ponting said. "I thought we could have got a few more runs than we did. We lost two or three quick wickets through the middle of our innings, our fielding was a little bit sloppy, by no means was this a great performance. "It was a good solid performance but I think we can improve for Adelaide." But Ponting admitted the victory was well received in the Australian dressing room. "There's a little bit of relief and a little bit of joy that some of the hard work we've been putting in finally came through in our performance," he said. "It's been a really good result for us as far as confidence is concerned. Having a win under our belt will certainly bring a lot more confidence. "It's just good for the guys to get that winning feeling back around the dressing room. We will have a bit more of a spring in our step." Wicketkeeper Haddin marked his promotion to the top of the order with a Man of the Match performance after a fine 109 from 114 balls. But despite a ringing endorsement from his captain, the makeshift opener insisted he was not looking to make it a permanent switch and stressed the win was more important than his first ton at ODI level. "Not at all," Haddin said when asked if he would like to open full-time. "It's come about from a few injuries. I was quite enjoying my role down at six and seven, closing out the game. "Winning is more the main focus. If we didn't get the result we were out of the series. It was more satisfying to get the win." Ponting added: "If he keeps doing that he can bat there as long as he likes. We know how dangerous 'Hads' can be against the new ball or the old ball. "Getting off to the start we did with Brad and Michael was outstanding."

*PA Sport