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Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting ‘feeling great’ after heart scare

Ricky Ponting was taken to hospital in Perth. (Mike Egerton/PA)
Ricky Ponting was taken to hospital in Perth. (Mike Egerton/PA)

Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting has eased any health fears after a heart scare.

The 47-year-old was taken to hospital in Perth after feeling unwell while working as a television pundit during the Test match against the West Indies on Friday.

Ponting had been commentating for Channel 7 during the third morning and is understood to have sought medical attention at the lunch interval at Optus Stadium but returned to his TV duties on Saturday.

Ponting told Channel 7: “I probably scared a lot of people yesterday and had a scary moment for myself. I was sitting in the comms box halfway through the stint 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. 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 (Justin 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.

“Ten or 15 minutes later, I was in the hospital getting the best treatment that I possibly could. I feel great this morning, I am all shiny and new this morning.

“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.

Justin Langer, right, was in the commentary box with Ricky Ponting, left, on Friday
Justin Langer, right, was in the commentary box with Ricky Ponting, left, on Friday (Nick Potts/PA)

“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.

“My little mate looked after me and got me down there and I’m back, shiny and new this morning.”

Health issues among former players are a particularly serious issue in Australian cricket, following the shock deaths of Shane Warne and Dean Jones from heart complications.

Another former Australia cricketer, new Durham coach Ryan Campbell, also survived a cardiac arrest earlier this year.