Times of Oman
Price in RO
24ct / gm
22ct / gm
Forex Rates vs R01
Back to Homepage
Clarke backs Watson as team man
December 19, 2013 , 2 : 06 pm GST
SAVE THIS ARTICLE
Shane Watson. Photo - AFP
Skipper Michael Clarke on Thursday praised Shane Watson's approach of putting the team first in this week's Ashes-winning Perth Test, and described him as an example to young players.
Clarke's ringing endorsement of his former vice-captain follows a row in India in March, when Cricket Australia team performance manager Pat Howard gave the impression that Watson was not a team player.
Watson clashed with then-Test coach Mickey Arthur when he was one of four players who failed to submit written feedback requested by team management in India, as Australia were on the wrong end of a clean sweep in a four-Test series.
At the time Howard let slip in a press conference that he believed Watson "acts in the best interests of the team -- sometimes" -- and there was a perception that the much-maligned all-rounder was a selfish cricketer.
Former teammates of Watson leapt to his defence and before the Ashes tour to England in June, Watson publicly stated that he and Howard had sorted out any misunderstandings.
Pundits saw the comments by Clarke, praising Watson's impact on Australia's 3-0 Ashes win over England, as vindication for the player.
Clarke said the 32-year-old's near run-a-ball century and willingness to risk his wicket in the second innings was a lesson to teammates as Australia strive for a return to the top of the Test rankings.
"What Watto did the other day was put the team first," Clarke told reporters.
"He knew we were trying to score as many runs as we could before our declaration and he put the team first, which is a great example to the young players that that's what we're trying to do in our team. It's good to see."
Watson made a slow start to the back-to-back Ashes series, but he has scored two centuries in four Tests to suggest Australia might have finally found their solution at number three in the batting order.
Before Watson's ton at The Oval in August, the last hundred from an Australian first drop was Shaun Marsh in Sri Lanka two years previous.
"It's obviously a tough position, there's no doubt about it," Clarke said. "Watto is hitting the ball as good as I've seen."
Clarke also paid tribute to the role Australia's medical staff have played in reclaiming the Ashes.
Team physio Alex Kountouris kept Clarke in action despite his chronic back problems, doctor Peter Brukner turned the injury-prone Watson into a regular contributor and Ryan Harris is preparing for his eight consecutive Test after injury-blighted years.
"Alex and the doc Peter have done a fantastic job," said Clarke, who also credited Cricket Australia for putting a greater emphasis on the domestic four-day Sheffield Shield competition leading into the Ashes.
"We're currently ranked fifth in the world. We want to be the number one Test team."
Rate this Article
Rates : 0, Average : 0
Post a Comment
Did you like this section? Leave a comment!
Your Name :
Your Email Address :
Your Comment :
Enter ImageText here:
No Comments Posted
Latest in this section
Reed holds on to win WGC-Cadillac Championship
Bayern boss Hoeness goes on trial for tax evasion
Perfectionist Guardiola unsatisfied with big win
Predator Villa waiting in the wings for Atletico
Ozil ends goal drought, over penalty miss, says Wenger
TOP RATED ARTICLES
Mild tremor jolts Omanís Dibba
Times News Service
Vitamin D crunch in sunny Oman
Times News Service
African singer wows Oman audience
Galfar ex-managing director, six others get jail terms by Muscat Primary Court in oil bribery case
A township to call home for Muscat bachelors
Fahad Al Mukrashi
More in News
Urban gardens greening Berlin rooftops, airfield
Italian violinist strikes a chord with street children
Tips for writing a good article
How to choose your writing form and communicate your creative thoughts
Natasja Engholm - Special to Times of Oman
Indonesia's illegal dentists bite back after ban
More in Features
Europe and US have legitimised neo-Nazis
Turkey should avoid being in Shanghai Five
The ever-shifting borders in the Middle East
Armed neo-Nazis have taken over Ukraine
Paul Craig Roberts
France is in sight of the violence in CAR
More in Columns
Get Top news by E-mail.
Copyright © 2014 Muscat Press & Publishing House SAOC. All rights reserved. Times of Oman is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.
For reprint rights contact:
TOO Online Editorial