WTC Final | 'He is Scoring Quicker Than...': Ponting Compares Head with Aussie Legend
Travis Head showcased his wide range of shots in WTC final
Travis Head's remarkable century knock during the opening day of the ICC World Test Championship (WTC) 2021-23 final against India at The Oval in London has garnered high praise from former Australian cricketer Ricky Ponting.
In the face of early setbacks, with David Warner, Usman Khawaja, and Marnus Labuschagne departing for a mere 76 runs, it was the dynamic duo of Head and Steve Smith who revitalized Australia's innings with an awe-inspiring 285-run partnership, propelling their team to a commanding total of 469.
While Smith adopted a conventional approach, accumulating 121 runs off 268 deliveries, it was Head who stole the limelight with his breathtaking performance. Blazing his way to 163 runs off just 174 balls, the left-handed batsman’s whirlwind knock comprised 25 boundaries and a solitary six.
Reflecting upon Head’s knock, Ponting drew comparisons between the 29-year-old and the legendary Adam Gilchrist. While speaking to the ICC, the legendary captain stated that Head's batting style is reminiscent of Gilchrist’s and even suggested that the batter’s scoring rate currently surpasses the former wicketkeeper.
“He probably is (similar to Gilchrist). In fact, he is probably scoring quicker now than Gilly probably ever did. His strike rate through this WTC qualification period is 81, which is higher than anyone else in the world to have scored more than 500 runs,” said Ponting.
The Australian veteran further expressed his admiration for Head's growing confidence and increasing strike rate and highlighted his ability to put pressure on bowlers right from the word go. He also commended the Adelaide-born cricketer’s consistent performance over the past two years.
“His confidence is growing by the game, his strike rate keeps going up, he hits boundaries early on in his innings which puts pressure back on the bowlers which is what you want from your middle order players, and his last two years have been quite remarkable,” the erstwhile cricketer added.
Ponting further said that Indian bowlers will learn from their experiences in the first innings and make necessary adjustments in the second, but cautioned that such adaptations may come too late to thwart the impact of the imperious southpaw.