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It's not about the money: ex Test stars

AAP logoAAP 18/11/2016 Warren Barnsley

Ian Healy and Michael Slater have cast doubt on Ricky Ponting's suggestion that better pay would persuade ex-Test stars to opt for coaching over commentary.

With the Australian team in crisis, former captain Ponting bemoaned a brain drain with Australia's greats opting for the comforts of the commentary box over teaching the game to future stars.

Ponting called for higher pay for state coaches as an incentive for retired stars.

Rather than money, Healy said he pursued a post-playing media career over coaching to spend more time at home.

"It's got nothing to do with money," Healy told SEN Radio on Friday.

"I don't wish to spend the time dealing with cricketers, travelling the world like you did as a player. That's the issue."

Slater, who appears on the Nine Network's cricket coverage alongside Healy, said cricketers' increased pay in recent years has given them more choice in their post-playing careers.

"A lot of guys think, 'well, I've got the money, I don't really want to be on the road as much as I have been. It's time to have a little bit more time at home'," Slater said on Sky Sports Radio where he co-hosts a breakfast program.

"In yesteryear when a cricketer retired, they might have made a little bit of brass while they played, but they weren't set up for life.

"So they had to get very quickly back into the work side of things.

"You're not going to get a guy who's worth $10 million coming out of playing, and now has a young family, who's going to say, 'yeah, I put my hand up to be on the road as much as I was as a player'."

Slater said commentating, like coaching, wasn't for everyone.

He said admired Justin Langer, who now coaches Western Australia, but his fellow former Test opener was the exception.

"He's just in love with the game of cricket. He wants to put back into the game of cricket. But he didn't have to," Slater said.

"It's (commentating) not for everyone. Many have tried it and not cut it.

"Mike Hussey tried the media. It hasn't worked out for him.

"I think Mike Hussey is a guy you could get back involved at the grassroots of the game."

Ponting, who has coached Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League, has been watching Australia's Test series loss against South Africa from London, commentating for British television.

"If you look through the greats of the game, how many of those guys are actually back inside the system coaching somewhere?," Ponting told AllOutCricket.com.

"They're not. They're all sitting back behind a microphone commentating because they get paid more and it's less intrusive time-wise.

"I think it's something that needs to be looked at."

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