ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday June 01, 2008
Vol. 42 - No 53

Ricky rich 10,000 up

NORTH SOUND, Antigua, May 30 (Reuters) - Australia captain Ricky Ponting became only the seventh batsman to reach 10,000 runs in test matches on Friday and declared himself proud of his long career. Ponting went to the crease needing 61 on the first day of the second test against West Indies and become the third Australian to reach the milestone following former captains Allan Border and Steve Waugh. He reached that target with a well-placed drive through the covers to take two off West Indies captain Ramnaresh Sarwan but was dismissed soon after for 65.

Australia's captain Ricky Ponting, left, and partner Simon Katich run between wickets during the opening day of the second cricket Test match against West Indies at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in St. John's, Antigua. Ponting became the seventh player to reach 10,000 runs and Katich hit an unbeaten 113 as Australia totaled 259 for three at close on day one. AP

“I'm actually prouder of the amount of games I have played, my longevity in the game than how many runs I've scored,” he told reporters. “I've played 118 tests now and I guess if you bat in the top order and play that many games, you are probably expected to be around the mark that I am around at the moment.

“I am proud of everything I've achieved in the game but probably more proud of how many winnings teams I've played in rather than how many runs I've scored. They are the things that motivate me to keep playing, whenever I am confronted with a situation, whether it be to go and get a 100 or bat a session through, they are the things that excite me.

Ponting said he valued competition far more than breaking individual records.“The one-on-one contests of the game of cricket are what keep me going,” he added. “Milestones and stats have never been anything that's motivated me about the game.” The other players to have entered five figures are Brian Lara of the West Indies and Indian trio Sachin Tendulkar, Sunil Gavaskar and Rahul Dravid.

Ponting is the third fastest to get to five figures in terms of innings and second fastest for tests. He admitted he had the statistic in his thoughts before. going out to bat. “It was on my mind a little bit today actually. It's nice to get there, disappointing to get out when I did but nice to get to that figure.

“I've never been anyone that's really focused or worried too much about milestones or statistics but to be the third fastest player in history (to reach 10,000) is a nice little thing that I will be able to look back upon when I'm finished,” added the 33-year-old.

Ponting looked at ease on a flat track until, the record in the bag, he chased a delivery from Jerome Taylor and was caught in the slips. Nonetheless his team had a comfortable day in easy batting conditions as they made 259 for three.

Australia 1st innings
PA Jaques lbw b Bravo 17
SM Katich not out 113
RT Ponting c Marshall b Taylor 65
MEK Hussey c Chanderpaul b Sammy 10
MJ Clarke not out 38
Extras (lb 4, w 5, nb 7) 16
Total (3 wickets; 82 overs) 259
To bat A Symonds, BJ Haddin, B Lee, MG Johnson, SR Clark, SCG MacGill
Fall of wickets1-36, 2-172, 3-199
Bowling : DBL Powell 17-3-54-0, FH Edwards 18-3-55-0 (1nb),JE Taylor 15-3-43-1 (4nb, 1w),DJ Bravo 15- 1-56-1 (2nb),DJG Sammy 12-1-31-1, RR
Sarwan 5-0-16-0

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