England all-rounder Ben Stokes is the only player to replace captain Joe Root says former Australia skipper Ricky Ponting.
Ponting said that Stokes could improve his own game with the leadership thurst to him.
“The only person that can take over is Ben Stokes. I think Stokes would actually grow as a player if he was the captain of that side. I think with a bit of extra responsibility, he might become an even better player and that might have a good impact on the rest of the team,” Ponting was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.
Stokes didn’t had a good Ashes with the despite his 66-run knock in the ongoing fourth Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
“You’ll find instances right the way through even with top-order batters where it hasn’t worked. It just sits well with some and doesn’t with others. I don’t know Ben Stokes that well, but if I was trying to change the face of English cricket and trying to give a bit more of a heartbeat and a bit more soul, then I think he’d be the one that I’d be looking at to lead the team. Even with what we saw yesterday, to stand up under that much physical pain says a lot about him, and his teammates will thrive off that. Anyone that plays underneath him, I’m sure will grow an arm and a leg.”
Ponting also warned Root that continuing as Test captain after the ongoing Ashes would wear him down, drawing parallels with the final days of his own captaincy stint and Root’s current scenario. “I just think it’s going to grind him down. Even looking back on my career, I played a couple of years longer — and potentially even captained a couple of years longer — than I should have. The challenge just gets harder and harder, and it weighs you down.”