Ponting overplayed his mild cards in Cardiff: Roebuck

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Sydney, July 14 (ANI): Noted cricket columnist Peter Roebuck feels that Australia played exceptionally well in Cardiff and were denied victory only by "a soporific surface and resistance from sturdy opponents with a short backlift and a stubborn streak."

"Australia played impressively and go to Lord's with high hopes.

Brett Lee is recovering, and the ball was reverse swinging. Besides, England have far more to worry about," he adds in article for the Sydney Morning Herald.

He said that Australia would look back on the match with a mixture of satisfaction and regret.

"Overall, it was a resounding performance, notable for superb batsmanship and persistent bowling. Brad Haddin did well behind the sticks, too, and no catches were dropped. Ricky Ponting's team looked united and solid, and the captain himself had a splendid match, both with the bat and as the side's driving force," Roebuck says.

He also praised Tasmanian for choosing Ben Hilfenhaus and Nathan Hauritz, the two best bowlers in the match.

Nor did his team lose intensity on a supine pitch. That is not to say he is a master tactician.

Among the bowlers, only Mitchell Johnson disappointed, but his loss of form was a severe handicap to a limited strike force. Inescapably, he is the key man in the modern Australian attack.

"Too much faith was shown in Johnson. It seemed odd, too, that Marcus North was used in the last minutes. Presumably, it was an attempt to send down as many overs as possible but, as a rule, quality is more important than quantity," Roebuck concludes. (ANI)

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