Hayden weighing up future
Matthew Hayden is seriously contemplating his cricketing future following his omission from the Twenty20 and one-day squads.
By Joe Drabble
Last Updated: 08/01/09 1:49pm
Out-of-form opener Matthew Hayden is seriously contemplating his cricketing future following his omission from the Australia Twenty20 and one-day squads.
The left-handed Queenslander has endured a torrid time with the bat in recent months - averaging under 24 in his last nine Test matches.
Despite his recent woes, 37-year-old Hayden still boasts a formidable record and averages 50.73 for the Baggy Green's during 103 Test matches.
After announcing the 13-man squads for the two Twenty20 matches and the five ODI's, Australia chairman of selectors Andrew Hilditch confirmed that Hayden was overlooked due to his advancing years rather than his poor form.
And while Hilditch also insisted Hayden will be considered for selection for the return series against South Africa, the aggressive opener admits he has a lot of thinking to do, with retirement a distinct possibility.
"My immediate future is to go back home to my family and to people that love me the most and to just enjoy this time and take guard again," he said.
"It has been a pretty long last four months.
"If mates are telling me 'mate it's time to go' then I would certainly listen to that but my mates aren't saying that."
Hayden, who briefly held the world record after scoring 380 against Zimbabwe in 2003, received a standing ovation in his last Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground with many predicting that would indeed be his final Test appearance.
However, Australia captain Ricky Ponting has backed his under-fire fire opener, and believes a decision to retire would be a huge blow to his side.
"I would have him in my time everyday of the week," said Ponting.
"He's a champion player and a champion bloke and great for our team right at the moment."