Sydney, Feb 21(ANI): Australian skipper Ricky Ponting has blamed the glut of matches for the season's meagre one-day crowds, rather than the poor performances of the visiting Pakistan and West Indies teams.
Around 15,500 people were at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Friday to watch Australia thrash the West Indies by 125 runs to seal their unbeaten summer.
That was 39 per cent lower than the 25,463 that came to watch the first match of the series a fortnight ago, which at the time was thought to be a particularly poor crowd.
"I'm not sure if the lack of contest had anything to do with it at all, to tell the truth," The Sydney Morning Herald quoted Ponting, as saying.
"I just think we've played a whole lot. Look at all the days of cricket the public has had to pay to go and watch during the summer. I think that's probably the reason why the numbers have dwindled off in the last week," he added.
Cricket Australia chief spokesman Peter Young, had earlier insisted that the reason for the decline in one-day attendances stemmed from Australia not being challenged by opposing teams.
"At the moment were are at the bottom of a four-year cycle and we're coming towards the end of the summer where we've had, unfortunately, very lopsided contests. The public, at the end of the day, has only got a certain appetite for walkovers," Young had said.
"There's a lot of armchair theory ... most in that corner of the lounge-room that says that the quality of the content this summer is fairly soft and we are at the bottom end of the four-year cycle," he added. (ANI)