3 Feb 2009

Ponting reluctantly taking a break

6:19 am on 3 February 2009

The Australian cricket captain Ricky Ponting says he's taking a break from the Chappell-Hadlee series reluctantly, pointing out it was the selectors' decision.

Ponting will be sitting out the next two one dayers against the Black Caps, and he says the chairman of selectors Andrew Hilditch had always planned for him to have a short spell now, as part of their plan to rest all players at appropriate times during the year.

The uncapped South Australian batsman Callum Ferguson, who scored a Sheffield Shield century yesterday, and West Australian Adam Voges have been called into the squad in place of Ponting, and the opening batsman Shaun Marsh who has a hamstring injury.