Friends with Ponting but fight not over: Ishant

Press Trust Of India
Apr 23, 2008 at 04:50pm IST

New Delhi: Ishant Sharma and Ricky Ponting are teammates in Kolkata Knight Riders; they are even friends but the Indian pacer says he won’t stop from “giving it back” to the Australian captain when they are playing for their national teams.

Ishant and Ponting had set up a great rivalry during India's recent tour of Australia, but playing in the Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 competition has given them a chance to become friendly.

"It is a privilege to share dressing room with a great player like Ponting. We discussed cricket and joked at each other at the dressing room, we are just like friends now. But it is not that I won't show aggression at him while playing for India against Australia," said Sharma in Delhi on Wednesday.

TEAM INDIA FIRST: Ishant says equation with Ponting will change when they are playing for their countries.

"No colour comes before you when you are donning your national colours. I will give back if I am provoked and the same thing had happened in the Australia series. The bad blood during the Australian series is past. We are professionals, we are friends off the field and don't think of the past."

Asked what Ponting told him before he started bowling during Knight Riders' match against Deccan Chargers in Kolkata, Sharma said: "he told me the first over was very important in any game. You had done well in the past and you should be doing that now."

Ishant said he did not share the view of Ponting, Brett Lee and some others that the cash-rich Indian Premier League would mend the bad blood between the Indian and Australian cricketers.

"I don't see that way. We are professionals and playing as a unit, so we have to interact, discuss cricket and other things. But, once you are face to face playing for your country it is different," he said.

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