CA wants Ponting involved with Australian team, Sutherland says

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Cricket Australia (CA) chief James Sutherland has said he is keen to pick Ricky Ponting's brains in a bid to develop upcoming players, but has not confirmed he is in the running to coach Australia at the next Twenty20 World Cup.

Reports have linked former Test captain and World Cup winner Ponting with the job for the Twenty20 showpiece event — on Australian soil — in two years' time.

Ponting acted as assistant coach to the national Twenty20 side in Sri Lanka in 2017, and this week claimed he was in discussions with CA about a possible coaching role in 2020.

Sutherland told ABC Grandstand that CA was always looking to get Ponting more involved in their coaching ranks, but any arrangement will have to work around Ponting's "busy schedule".

"I don't want to get into the specifics of that because there are ongoing discussions, and as Ricky has said we are always talking to him about opportunities for him to be more involved," Sutherland said.

Australian players celebrate the wicket of Kusal Mendis of Sri Lanka during the International T20 cricket match.

"Ricky has got a fantastic cricket brain and we want him involved in different ways. He's got a busy schedule, so we've got to work around that to some extent.

"But there will be opportunities for him to be involved. Whether it's formally as a lead role with the T20 team, I guess time will tell."

Sutherland said CA has been working with many past players so as to pass on experience to younger players.

"[Former Test opener] Chris Rogers is involved in coaching with the under-19s," Sutherland said.

External Link: Interview: James Sutherland

"It's something that came out of our team performance review a few years ago, we want to get past players who have the inclination and the aptitude to pass on their knowledge to players at the highest level, but also through our junior ranks.

"I think that's a real positive for Australian cricket."

Dead rubber Tests still great 'events'

The SCG Test primes as another dead rubber in Sydney, with Australia leading the Ashes series 3-0 after four completed Tests.

It's not the first time Sydney has hosted a dead rubber in a Test series, coming as the traditional New Year's Test match, but Sutherland says the expected crowds show people are still lapping up the sporting event in isolation.

Crowds cue up at the MCG prior to day one of the Boxing Day Test

"The Sydney Test match hasn't been live for a long time," Sutherland said.

"We do think about it a lot in terms of how it fits and how it works, and I guess we could change the order — we wouldn't want to change the order such that the Sydney Test match wasn't the New Year's [Test] or Boxing Day in Melbourne, but we could push it back into the summer … like it was going back 20 or 30 years [ago].

"But we've looked at it, we've looked at all sorts of permutations and combinations.

"First three days have still sold out here, it is not just a matter of where the contest is at and whether it's an even series.

"This is a great sporting event, people want to come anyway, and I think that's indicated by the first three days having sold out, and we'll have a great crowd on day four as well."

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