Australian captain Ricky Ponting has not ruled out returning to England in 2013 for a third attempt at leading his side to Ashes victory away from home.
Ponting, who took over the Australian captaincy in 2004, became only the second Australian to lead his side to two Ashes defeats away from home when England triumphed 2-1 with a 197-run win at The Oval, the same series scoreline of 2005, Ponting's first Ashes tour as captain.
"I still think I've got a lot to offer the team as a batsman and as a captain and a leader," he said, addressing the media in Sydney.
"If it ends up getting to the point where I'm not the captain then obviously, as I said, my hunger and determination to keep playing this game's as good as ever.
"So if that's with a 'c' next to my name all well and good, if it's not I still think I've got a lot to offer particularly a lot of the younger guys that are in our set-up at the moment."
Although Ponting will be 38 by the time the 2013 tour comes around, he added:
"I'd love to be able to go back and give it one more crack but that's a long way away yet, I've got to worry about the next 12 or 18 months or two years first and see if all that hunger is still there, but right at the moment it definitely is."
Ponting was given votes of support by two other players who returned to Australia with him - both Simon Katich and Stuart Clark telling the press that Ponting was not to blame for the defeat and that he remained the best man for the job.
Ponting is being given a rest ahead of a gruelling schedule for Australia that includes the defence of the Champions Trophy in South Africa, seven One-Day Internationals in India and then home series against the West Indies and Pakistan.
© Cricket World 2009