Ponting - No blame on Lee
Ricky Ponting has jumped to the defence of Brett Lee after the bowler's expensive performance against the West Indies.
Last Updated: 07/06/09 4:43pm
Australian captain Ricky Ponting says he is satisfied with the progress of Brett Lee's comeback, despite the bowler's expensive performance against the West Indies.
In only his second international match since undergoing ankle surgery over the New Year, Lee was blasted for 56 runs off his four overs as Australia were convincingly beaten in their ICC World Twenty20 opener.
He claimed the wicket of Chris Gayle but not before the Windies captain had smashed 88 runs, including 26 from a single Lee over.
But Ponting has stood firm in his support of the pace bolwer, believing that Gayle was in unstoppable form during Saturday's match.
"He obviously got taken down a little bit but I don't think it mattered who was bowling to Chris in the sort of mood he was in," Ponting said.
"I'm happy with the way he's coming along."
Ponting was also pleased with the return of Shane Watson, who bowled his first overs in a match since hurting his back last summer.
Watson conceded 13 runs from two overs but impressed with good fluency and speed.
"He got through pretty well I thought," the Australian captain added.
"He'll just get better and better the more overs he gets under his belt. The more he bowls to better players as well he'll benefit from that a lot. He gives us great flexibility."
Despite the defeat, the 34-year-old was keen to take the positives from his side's display, including the performance of batsman David Warner.
Ponting admitted that the absence of Andrew Symonds forced him into changing the top order but said Warner's innings of 63 showed that he could fill the banished player's shoes.
"We were looking at doing some slightly different things with our team in this game if Symmo had have been in the middle order there," he said.
"But he wasn't so it was good for David that chance at the top of the order to score and I think he showed everybody just how good he can be in this form of the game."