Ricky Ponting has announced that he will give the IPL a miss this year. Amongst the reasons he has given is the fact that Australia “have something to prove to the South Africans and the world”. This has been lauded in some quarters as a rare example of a professional sportsman putting his ability to play for his country above his own personal financial gain.
Ponting himself certainly has something to prove. His performance as captain has been openly questioned of late, and he wasn’t exactly setting the IPL alight in any case. On the other hand, he has already had one ‘rest’ so far this year (albeit one which was rapidly curtailed when the team began to implode against New Zealand), so there may be more to this decision than meets the eye.