According to Ricky Ponting, Joe Root has shown significant improvement in his game over the past two years and deserves to be recognized as one of the cricketing greats. Root emerged as the highest run-scorer in the 2021-23 World Test Championship (WTC) cycle, amassing 1915 runs in 22 matches at an average of 53.19, including eight centuries and six half-centuries. Ponting believes that Root had struggled to fulfill his potential until recently, but has now broken free from his limitations.
“I don’t think he’s been underrated because I don’t think he’s actually probably fulfilled his full potential until the last two years,” Ricky Ponting shared with ICC. “He’s never scored a hundred in Australia, but his last two years I think he’s made eight or nine hundreds, which has elevated him from being a very, very good player to one of the great players.”
Ponting emphasized that people are now beginning to comprehend the true capabilities of Joe Root. The England captain also had a remarkable start to the 2023-25 WTC cycle by scoring a century against Australia in the first Ashes Test at Edgbaston in Birmingham. Root’s unbeaten 118 in the first innings, along with a solid 46 in the second innings, showcased his exceptional skills.
However, despite Root’s outstanding performance, England suffered a narrow two-wicket defeat, resulting in a 0-1 deficit in the five-match series. Ponting was particularly impressed by Root’s fearless approach towards Australian paceman Pat Cummins, whom he treated with absolute disdain.
“The innings he played at Edgbaston was a sensational knock, full of class. He’s added some shots to his repertoire, which I didn’t think he would be able to do. Reverse sweeping Pat Cummins’ first ball of a day in a Test match on the start of day four was something I didn’t think I’d see,” Ricky Ponting expressed.
Root’s recent achievements and his ability to adapt and innovate in his batting approach have earned him accolades from Ponting, highlighting his transformation into a truly exceptional player.