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Updated: December 21, 2009 15:29 IST

Ponting spends 35th birthday in hyperbaric chamber

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Ricky Ponting
The Hindu Ricky Ponting

Australian skipper Ricky Ponting had his first experience of a hyperbaric chamber, as part of the rehab to recover in time for the Boxing Day Test against Pakistan starting on Saturday in Melbourne.

The hyperbaric chamber is designed to accelerate the healing process by pumping extra oxygen into the body, but Ponting said he did not enjoy the experience coming on his 35th birthday.

The therapy session was kept a secret, and was leaked when Australian assistant coach Justin Langer made a guest appearance on a local radio programme. "It wasn’t the most pleasant experience of my life, especially on my birthday night when I was looking forward to maybe finishing off a Test match. So, I’m doing everything I can. I’ll probably have a few more of those treatments over the next couple of days and if you want to know if I am, just ring Lang (Langer) and he’ll tell you,” The Sydney Morning Herald quoted Ponting, as saying.

"I’m flat out doing whatever I can to give myself a chance. It’s felt better over the last couple of days, but in saying that I haven’t had a bat in my hand either, and that’s the thing that’s been giving me the most grief, when I’ve had a bit of weight in my hand and going through my forearm,” he added.

He also emphasised how he had misjudged the delivery, which is responsible for the injury.

"I played it poorly, at the end of the day. There’s not too many times that I’ve been hit like that. First ball I actually went back and pulled one and the second ball I ducked into one a little bit. Looking back, I looked at the replays a few times, and I actually expected it to bounce a bit higher and get over me a bit more than it did. I just didn’t play it well,” Ponting said.

"The next one hit me flush in the ribs because my arm was still dead and I couldn’t get my bat up to fend that one off, so I wore a couple in a row. It hasn’t happened too often in my career. Hopefully this doesn’t hang around too long,” he added.

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