Former Test skipper Ricky Ponting has been fined $300 in default a week’s jail after he was caught commentary speeding on the second day of the Australia-India first Test at the Adelaide Oval.
Police clocked the Test great at an almost unbelievable 410 words a minute, almost three times over the comprehensible hearing limit yesterday afternoon as the last four Indian wickets fell for just eleven runs.
Ponting took advantage of a late 2.30pm local time start to today’s play to plead guilty in the Adelaide Magistrates’ Court this morning to high-range speed commentating.
A guilty plea could have seen Ponting lose his commentary licence for some months and be ordered to undertake a safe talking course but Mr Simon Wright SM showed some leniency.
Nevertheless, the magistrate told Ponting that as a cricket tragic himself, he found it unforgiveable that “someone with so much to give to the game could talk so fast that no-one had the remotest of chances of understanding what he was saying”.
“For your future employment’s sake, regardless of whether Channel 7 keeps the cricket or if it goes back to Channel 9 where it belongs, please try to control your emotions and talk well within acceptable hearing limits,” the magistrate said.
The Bug understands Ponting thanked the magistrate for his leniency but his rapid-fire comments were too much for our reporter’s excellent 250 words a minute Pitman’s shorthand to take down with any real chance of accuracy.