Former Australian great and current coach of Mumbai Indians, Ricky Ponting entitling to his own perspective picked his all-time greatest playing XI in the cash-rich IPL. Interestingly, Ponting named the pioneer Mahendra Singh Dhoni as the commander-in-chief of the team.
Choosing the best players in all the ten editions of the Indian Premier League thus far, he had to pick the fabulous four overseas and seven Indian players. However, the experienced squad comprises aggressive openers, serene middle-order and belligerent bowlers.
According to Ricky Ponting, Chris Gayle and David Warner were by far the greatest openers ever since the inception of IPL. Then comes the calm and composed middle-order batsmen who are full of Indians namely Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina.
It is cognisance of the fact that MS Dhoni is the greatest skipper, the IPL fraternity has ever seen and Ponting too didn’t take too much time in picking the best captain. MS Dhoni’s astute captaincy traits in CSK helped them to lift two IPL accolades.
“MS Dhoni is at No.6 and he’ll also be the captain of my side. He brings huge experience and whenever he’s at the crease … you’re always a chance of winning the game. I’ve seen him do it off his own bat on several occasions so I’ll go with him as skipper, with the gloves and batting at No.6,” said Ricky Ponting as per the quotes from The Indian Express.
Though Dwayne Bravo didn’t make the cut in this edition of IPL, he was picked by Ponting as he believes Bravo has carved out a reputation for himself as the greatest all-rounder. The reliable spin battery highlights Harbhajan Singh and Amit Mishra.
“I’ve gone for a bit of a shock here and have put Amit Mishra on the side. He’s got an outstanding IPL record, he’s got great variations and he’s a wicket-taker because he’s not scared to throw the ball up. He turns the ball enough both ways and he’s been a great performer for a long, long time.”
Then comes the deadly pace bowling attack namely Lasith Malinga and Ashish Nehra. “A left-arm option is always nice so Ashish Nehra is the other quick I’ve gone for. He’s been around a long time, offers great consistency, the ability to swing the new ball just enough and his ability to nail what he needs to nail at the right times under pressure is probably what sets him aside from most others,” concluded Ponting.
Here are the key players who were caught by Ponting’s radar. The respective players have played a phenomenal part for their teams which was an easy bargain to make for Ponting. Here is the best Playing XI who represented one or more franchises:
Best IPL Playing XI:
Chris Gayle, David Warner, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, MS Dhoni (c),(wk), Dwayne Bravo, Harbhajan Singh, Amit Mishra, Lasith Malinga, Ashish Nehra.