Facing Mitchell Johnson in nets was horrible, says Ricky Ponting

Melbourne: Paying tribute to former Australian fast bowler Mitchell Johnson , former skipper Ricky Ponting has revealed that it was a horrible experience to face the recently retired pacer in the nets.

News.com.au quoted Ponting as saying that Johnson was a blessing as well as curse for his side.

Lavishing praise on Johnson, Ponting said that the former used to be extremely competitive as his only aim was just to bowl at full pace.

The 40-year-old said that it was because of Johnson that he had to miss his Sydney match during the 2011 Ashes as the pacer had smashed his finger.

Former Australian player Ian Chappell said that Johnson would be remembered for his devastating spells of bowling that changed games quickly.

Johnson retired from the game after claiming two wickets for his side in the second Test against New Zealand that ended in a draw.

Johnson’s decision to call time on his career came soon after similar moves by fellow Australians Michael Clarke, Brad Haddin, Chris Rogers and Ryan Harris.

Johnson replaced Brett Lee as Australia’s fourth highest wicket taker when he dismissed Doug Bracewell in the Perth Test. Dennis Lillee (355), Glenn McGrath (563) and Shane Warne (708) are the only bowlers to have taken more wickets.