So former Australian Test Cricket Captain Ricky Ponting has announced that he would like a career in the media now that he has hung up his pads, and no doubt Channel Nine will jump at the chance of having him as part of their commentary team, if you can honestly call it that. This season the Nine line up has really emphasised that it is an old boys club and the lack of insight given by the so called experts as they banter between themselves as if they were mates sitting on a sofa at home has been embarrassing. For so long Nine has been the home of cricket, for many years it was the pace-setter so to see it fall so far as it has this season is regrettable.
However we digress, Ponting wishes to join his ex-teammates, which is probably no major surprise, it is a far easier gig than coaching. Ponting has had a habit of getting what he wants, let us not forget that he was the first player in Sheffield Cricket to be allowed to play for a state that he did not live in, Cricket Australia relaxing that rule to allow him to live in Sydney yet play for Tasmania. However back to his new career, like England football captain Alan Shearer maybe he should have thought about this during his career. Ponting like Shearer was far from media friendly during his career or his time as captain, yet now he like Shearer wants to join their throng. In England there was a great deal of annoyance that Shearer despite his at times truculent demeanour was rewarded with a role at SkySports. No doubt there will be some in the Media in Australia who wonder what Ponting has done to deserve such an opportunity, apart from captaining his country. Should a players co-operation with the media be taken into account before they are given such a role? Should they learn a little more about what it is like to be on the other side of the fence?
The problem with employing many ex-players is that few will be prepared to ask their ex team mates the hard questions, or be critical when criticism is required, which in turn lowers the level of the viewer experience for those watching on television.
It was also interesting to hear Shane Warne last week state that he was still keen to make a come-back to the Australian Test team, as he had something to offer the younger spin bowlers, if that is the case why not take up a role as a coach? One has to wonder if these ex players are too used to getting what they want to realise that like others there is a pathway that many have spent years working on before you get to the top in these new fields.