AUS v NZ 2019-20: Ponting warns Australia of Wagner's threat before the Test series

The three-match Test series begins in Perth with the pink ball D/N Test on December 12.

Neil Wagner | GettyFormer captain Ricky Ponting believes Australia shouldn't make the mistake of focussing only on how to go about tackling Trent Boult and Tim Southee but also over the other member of a quality New Zealand pace trio - Neil Wagner - during the three-match Test series beginning December 12 in Perth. 

Wagner, the "enforcer", Ponting says, could pose a major threat to the Aussie batsmen with his well-documented unconventional ways of taking wickets on the most benign of surfaces back home. 

Read Also: Boult, De Grandhomme confirmed to travel to Perth for the first Test

"That's his job. He just runs in … and bowls most balls between your hip and your armpit," Ponting told

"If you're going to score off him, you've got to score off him with a horizontal bat. How many times do you see a pull shot up in the air, or mis-hit to mid-on?"
"They'll use him as their enforcer … What they have is a well-rounded attack. Guys with the new ball who pitch it up and try to swing it and Wagner comes in behind them and bowls fast and short." 

Wagner's approach requires an enhanced level of fitness, passion and relentless accuracy. But he has been able to achieve that with distinction, especially in the last three years where the Kiwis have won eight of their last ten Test series, losing just one. 

"I have to sometimes go to a bit of a dark place to do what I do because it's not easy bowling bouncer after bouncer – it takes its toll," Wagner told NZ television station Newshub

"I'm passionate and I love representing my country and the sacrifices made to get to this point make it all worth a little bit of hard work."
"You want that ball in your hand during that final session – because sitting in the changing rooms with my mates after we win a Test match for New Zealand – I love the satisfaction on everyone's face and know that I contributed to that." 

(Inputs from


By Kashish Chadha - 06 Dec, 2019

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