Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting felt “all shiny and new” as he was back at the commentary box in the Australia and West Indies opening Test on Saturday after overcoming a heart-related scare.
The two-time World Cup-winning captain felt “unwell with sharp pains and dizziness” during the lunch break on day three of the opening Test and had to be rushed to the hospital.
“I probably scared a lot of people yesterday and had a scary moment for myself,” Ponting told Channel 7 broadcast ahead of day four on Saturday.
“I was sitting in the commentary box halfway through the stint (on day three) and got a couple of really short and sharp pains to my chest. I tried to stretch it out and get rid of it, and probably didn’t want to give too much away when I was on air.”
His former teammate and current commentary partner Justin Langer helped Ponting walk down the stairs to find Australian team doctor Leigh Golding, before he was rushed to the hospital.
“I had a couple of those incidents, got through the stint and went to walk to the back of the commentary box and got lightheaded and dizzy and grabbed the bench.
“I mentioned to JL (Langer) on the way out, who was commentating with me, that I had had these pains in my chest and Chris Jones heard me and just reacted straight away and got me out of there. 10 or 15 minutes later, I was in the hospital getting the best treatment that I possibly could.”
Ponting said he had a “relaxing” afternoon in hospital and a good sleep to recover, though the 47-year-old great said he was on high alert given the year in Australian cricket, with Shane Warne and Rod Marsh dying from shock heart attacks and Ryan Campbell also at one stage placed into an induced coma.
“I think the bottom line is, the fact that I was willing to share it with JL and the fact that your mate looks after you, I think as people of our age, we are a little reluctant to share much or talk about our health.
“I think that is a good learning curve for me yesterday, especially with what has happened in the last 12-18 months to really close people around us,” the former Australian skipper said.