Ponting and Butterworth put in a pre-season at Pontville Park

THE PONTVILLE Park Recreation complex hosted one of the greatest batsmen of the modern era when former Australian cricket captain Ricky Ponting joined his fellow Tasmanian Tigers for pre-season training in October.

With their home ground Blundstone Arena being re-surfaced during the pre-season, the Tigers trained at alternative venues in the lead up to the 2012-13 season, including Ferguson Park.

Tassie Tigers’ Ricky Ponting.

Brighton Mayor Tony Foster said it was fantastic to see the champion batsman demonstrate his skills at Pontville.

“It may not be the MCG or Lords, but I’m told the Tasmanian Tigers certainly enjoyed the training environment and facilities at Ferguson Park,” Mayor Foster said.

“ Now Ricky Ponting can truly say that he’s played at all the best grounds.

“It was also great to see Brighton’s own Luke Butterworth bowling on his ‘home’ ground.”

Tassie Tigers’ Luke Butterworth.

Ferguson Park has recently undergone further development and upgrading to a standard that saw the Tigers support staff keen to scheduling squad pre-season training at the venue.

Tasmanian Tigers’ Coach Tim Coyle said the team played some intra-squad practice matches and held training sessions at Ferguson Park.

“We have been training since May which has included many hours in the gym and indoor nets at Blundstone Arena, so to get out on some grass was a must and Ferguson Park suited us well,” Coyle said.

Ricky Ponting and Luke Butterworth were two of the Tiger stars in the opening Bupa Sheffield Shield fixture in Adelaide, with Butterworth netting a 10-wicket haul and man-of-the-match honours.

No doubt their pre-season efforts at Ferguson Park played a part in their early success.

Mayor Foster said he looked forward to future Tasmanian Tigers’ visits to Brighton and Council would continue to work with Cricket Tasmania to promote the sport in the municipality.