Ashes 2013 Watson returns to the top

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netAttheheartofSportAshes2013:Watsonreturnstothetop

June26,2013ByTimWrayLeaveaCommentShaneWatsonwillhaveasecondchancetore-emphasisehisclaimsthatheismorecomfortableandvaluabletotheAustralianteambyopeningthebatting。

NewAustraliancoachDarrenLehmannhasbeenquicktoasserthis‘aggressive’and‘feetforward’coachingstylethathepromisedafteronlyreceivingthejobafewdaysago。

LehmannconfirmedthatWatsonwouldbeatthetopoftheorderforthefirstAshesTestatTrentBridge。

Hesaid;ThatswherewewanthimtobatandhesdonereallywellforusthereandwerequitekeenforhimtoopenandtohaveabigpartintheAshesandobviouslymakealotofrunsforusandstarttheinningsupwell。



ShaneWatson’scareerbattingstatisticsalsocomplimenthisdesirestomovebacktothetopoftheorder。

Watson’sopeningaverageof43。

67from45inningsisconsiderablyhigherthanthecurrentpairofWarner(39。

46)andCowan(32。

90)whilstWatsononaveragesdoesnotexceed29battingfromthirdtoseventhposition。

WatsonandCowanopenedinAustralia’sagainstSomerset;howevertheyhaveonlyaddedtworunstothescoreafterAustraliabowledSomersetoutfor320followingtidyspellsfromMitchellStarc(4/33)andJamesPattinson(4/56)。

ItseemsthatDarrenLehmannhasbeenthefirsttotryandtackletheissueofhowtomaximisethevalueofShaneWatsonratherthantryingtolettheissuesortitselfout。

Onthatnote,LehmanninsistedthathewouldbebowlingduringtheAshesserieshoweverintheteam’scurrentmatchagainstSomersetWatsondidnotbowlanover。

ConsideringDavidWarner’sofffieldaltercationresultantinmatchsuspensionuntilthefirsttest,itislikelythatWatsonishisreplacementwitheitherEdCowanorChrisRogerstojoinhimdowntheotherend。

AssumingthatWatsonperformstohisstatisticsasanopener,onewouldthinkthatDaveWarnermaybeuseddowntheorderatsixtocombatthenewballandscorequickruns。

EdCowanlookslikelytobetheotherAustralianopenerconsideringthatheisbattingwithWatsoninthetourmatch,howeverstrongformfromChrisRogersinEnglishconditionsisastrongreminderfortheselectors,andhemayevenreplacePhillipHughesatthree。

Sources:SydneyMorningHerald,ESPNCricinfo(Statistics)

Image:FoxSportsAustralia

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