sport

Ponting ends with a whimper

Ricky Ponting's Test career came to an anti-climactic end just before lunch on day four of the third Test against South Africa in Perth.

Ponting was caught in the slips off Robin Peterson for eight, ending his 17-year vigil with an average of 52.

Ponting arrived in the middle in his trademark fashion, skipping and practising his cover drive, with the score on 81 for two, as the South African players formed a guard of honour to welcome him to the crease.

Hi final knock for his country, at the same venue he debuted at, lasted for 23 deliveries before he was caught by Jacques Kallis, who made little fuss. The South Africans all rushed to shake Punter's hand, hats removed, as he waved to the WACA crowd on his way off the international stage.

The rest of the hosts' morning was equally sombre, as they lost two other wickets while reaching 110 for three at lunch. Having started the day on 40 for nought, they were dismayed to find David Warner back in the hut two balls into the session.

The opening batsman failed to add to his overnight score of 29, and was caught by Graeme Smith in the slips off Vernon Philander, having found the outside edge. Shane Watson then came in to make 25, and was also caught by the Proteas skipper, this time off Morne Morkel.

When Ponting departed a few runs later, Michael Clarke came in to push the score over 100 and ended the session with two cracking boundaries off Peterson.