Former Australian cricket captain Ricky Ponting has expressed his admiration for Indian cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar’s technical prowess, stating that Tendulkar is the best batter he has ever played with or against. However, Ponting refrained from comparing Tendulkar with fellow Indian cricketer Virat Kohli, suggesting that a “fair comparison” could only be made once Kohli’s international career comes to an end.
Speaking on ‘ICC Review,’ Ponting reminisced about Tendulkar’s ability to adapt and overcome any strategy bowlers employed against him, whether playing in India or Australia. He praised Tendulkar as the most technically skilled player during his own playing era, noting the challenges Tendulkar faced, such as dealing with a softer, older ball that was difficult to see and hit in one-day internationals (ODIs).
Ponting acknowledged that the modern game has evolved, with improved bats, different field restrictions, and new balls making batting easier than before. He suggested that these factors contribute to the differences between Tendulkar’s and Kohli’s playing environments and should be considered in any comparison between the two.
The former World Cup-winning captain emphasized the importance of longevity in the game as a key parameter in evaluating a player’s greatness. Tendulkar, who played for over two decades, amassed an impressive record of 200 Tests and 463 ODIs, scoring 51 and 49 centuries in each format, respectively. He remains the all-time highest run-getter in cricket history.
Ponting fondly recalled Tendulkar’s 241 against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground during the 2003-04 series, highlighting Tendulkar’s exceptional straight drives as his trademark shot.