25 Jan 2009

Ponting backs Symonds

5:40 pm on 25 January 2009

The Australian cricket captain Ricky Ponting has backed the gaffe-prone all-rounder Andrew Symonds to tour South Africa, after Symonds made disparging remarks about New Zealand batsman Brendon McCullum on a radio show.

Cricket Australia is seeking answers from Symonds after he called McCullum a lump of cow excrement and again criticised the decision by New South Wales to sign McCullum to play Twenty20 cricket for them.

Ponting says Symonds is a vital part of Australia's plans in the republic.

The five-match one day series is locked up at one all with the possible decider on Monday at Adelaide Oval.