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Published on 04 Oct 2011 | over 6 years ago

No helmet, champion Ponting-
After the early finish to the Second Test, the Australians tried to have this match brought forward, but it did not suit the TV broadcasters, so they were kept in the heat of Sharjah a few days longer. However, the referee, Clive Lloyd, did agree to a loosening of the usual over-rate requirements and to extra drinks breaks, during which players could return to the dressing-rooms. Waugh had complained that "When the temperature is 51°C and the humidity is high, you shouldn't even be outside, let alone playing sport."

While Hayden made light of the conditions, Ponting battled heat exhaustion during another brilliant century. Despite having to put on an ice vest at each drinks break - and suffering a gashed jaw from a Mohammad Sami bouncer, when he was wearing only the baggy green because his helmet was too hot - he remained in charge during a chanceless 150, dancing down the track to the spinners and punishing a pace attack diluted by a back injury to Shoaib Akhtar.
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