Michael Clarke revealed that he fought with the Australian selectors to keep Ricky Ponting in the team after he took over the captaincy in 2011. Ponting led the ODI team for nine years and the Test side for seven years before leaving the post following Australia's quarter-final exit in the 2011 World Cup.
"When I took over the captaincy, I fought to keep Ricky. The selectors said, ‘Very rarely does a captain stand down and stay in the team, so if you don’t feel comfortable … it’s time for Ricky to go’. I said, ‘We need him. We need him for his batting, but he’ll be another coach for us’. So I fought hard to keep him, I wanted him there," said Michael Clarke while speaking to former NRL star Brett Finch on his Uncensored podcast.
"I thought he played a big part in helping that younger generation get to the level we needed to. If he was batting at 80 percent, he was better than anybody else at No. 3 or No. 4."
Ponting featured in 16 Tests under Clarke before announcing his retirement in December 2012. Then, in his autobiography At The Close Of Play in 2013, Ponting criticised Clarke for not being "too involved".
"It wasn’t that he was disruptive or treacherous, and publicly he said all the right things, but he had never been one to get too involved in planning sessions or debriefs at the end of a day’s play, or to volunteer to take on any of the captain’s workload," Ponting had written about his deputy.
Meanwhile, Clarke led Australia in 47 Tests, 74 ODIs and 18 T20Is, and it was under him, Australia won the 2015 World Cup.