Domain Tests v India

'I don’t like seeing it at all': Ponting

Test great weighs in on the Adelaide Oval's welcome for the visiting captain

Martin Smith at the Adelaide Oval

8 December 2018, 08:13 PM AEST

Ponting no fan of Kohli boos

The boos from a small section of the Adelaide Oval crowd would have been "water off a duck’s back" for Indian captain Virat Kohli, according to former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting.

Kohli received warm applause when he walked out to bat on day one and did again on day three of the first Domain Test, although some members the 30,000-strong crowd on Saturday could be heard booing the divisive Indian star.

As a player, Ponting was himself booed by a minority of English supporters on a handful of occasions during Australia’s 2009 Ashes tour.

The Australian says he doesn’t like the practice, but added it wouldn’t have fazed Kohli one bit.

"I don’t like seeing it at all," Ponting told after Kohli ground out 34 valuable runs in a 104-ball innings before he was dismissed just before stumps.

"It didn’t worry me as a player when it happened in England a couple times. You’ve almost got to accept it as acknowledgement for what you’ve done in the game. But I’d rather not see that happen at all.

"It’ll be water off a duck’s back (for Kohli), I’m sure. He’s probably had worse things happen to him on a cricket field, I would have thought, than getting booed by a couple of spectators as he walks on.

"If anything, it might have steeled him a little bit more.

"He (was) hardly playing a shot (early in his innings) and he looked like he wanted to really ground the Aussies into the deck."

Lyon turns Test as India build lead

Ponting, meanwhile, says Travis Head remains "a work-in-progress" as a Test batsman, but he’s backed him to fill a spot in Australia’s top six on next year’s Ashes tour.

Playing just his third Test, Head top-scored with 72 in Australia’s innings of 235, matching his score in the second innings of his debut Test in Dubai earlier this year.

The South Australian fell short of becoming the first Redbacks player since Jason Gillespie to score a Test century, but Ponting said he’s been impressed by start of the left-hander’s career as part of an inexperienced Australian top six.

Lyon roars to claim King Kohli's crown

"I’m really impressed with him as a player and a person," Ponting, who’s worked with Head as an assistant coach in Australia’s limited-overs teams in recent years, said.

"He’s very a level-headed young man, he’s very calm and pretty confident in his own game.

"He’s obviously still a work in progress. There’s not too many Australian batsmen at the moment who are the absolute finished product.

"If you look at the depth of batting in Australia, you’d think Travis Head’s name will be right at the top of the list (for the Ashes), specially with what we’ve seen in the last couple of games.

"And he’ll keep getting better, keep improving and learning about himself and what he has to do to have success at the top level.

"But from what I’ve seen so far, I’ve been pretty impressed with him."

Domain Test Series v India

Dec 6-10: First Test, Adelaide Oval

Dec 14-18: Second Test, Perth Stadium

Dec 26-30: Third Test, MCG

Jan 3-7: Fourth Test, SCG

Australia squad: Tim Paine (c, wk), Josh Hazlewood (vc), Mitch Marsh (vc), Pat Cummins, Aaron Finch, Peter Handscomb, Marcus Harris, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc, Chris Tremain

India squad: Virat Kohli (c), Murali Vijay, KL Rahul, Prithvi Shaw, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihari, Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant (wk), Parthiv Patel (wk), Ravi Ashwin, Ravi Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar