As the Securitate have handed down an edict that criticism cannot be levelled or a debate had in a retirement thread, I thought it about time to have an open debate on Ponting's career.
Namely - how will his legacy be seen.
Ponting as captain presided over some pretty ugly moments in Australian cricket history - *that* Sydney test, the swearing at the balcony following being run out by Gary Pratt, demanding that opposition teams take the Australian word on whether a catch was taken cleanly despite solid evidence that they'd claimed some pretty dodgy catches in the preceding years.
Somewhere in the middle, we have his record of success as captain - loads of series victories, world cups galore. But despite this, the man himself has expressed disappointment that he didn't win more Ashes series as captain.
And of course, Ricky the batsman. As many have said, after 100 tests, his average was 60+, but really he's finished with a merely superb record just shy of 52 - as opposed to a 60+ average which would have put him at the very, very top in the Pantheon of Batsmen.
How will history remember Ricky Ponting the cricketer?
Personally, I think the one overwhelming memory that I will have of Ricky Ponting is his majestic pull shot. Something unique and very watchable about the way he executed a pull shot. Glad to see he got one away in his last innings.
The Gary Pratt moment has almost faded in obscurity, but I suspect his image will be tarnished in the eyes of the Indian contingent for many years over the events of the 07/08 series whether fairly or unfairly.
Also, in the long run, will a final batting average of below that *magical* 52 barrier mean that his batting achievements will be devalued by later generations?
In short, will history view Ricky Ponting as the player he actually was?