Watson happy to move over
Shane Watson insists he is happy to make way for Phil Hughes in the batting order for Australia's Boxing Day Test against Pakistan.
By Rachel Griffiths
Last Updated: 22/12/09 10:34am
Australia all-rounder Shane Watson insists he is happy to make way for Phil Hughes in the batting order for the Boxing Day Test against Pakistan.
Hughes has been brought in as cover for captain Ricky Ponting, who is recovering from damaged tendons in his elbow sustained in the third Test against West Indies and could be absent for the match on Saturday.
Hughes, who was dropped from the Australia squad during their unsuccessful Ashes series earlier this year, would be used as an opener and not as a direct replacement for Ponting, meaning in-form duo Watson and Simon Katich would be broken up.
Katich has been Australia's most consistent opening batsman since the retirement of Justin Langer in 2008, averaging 52.10 and helping to blood Hughes on the international stage when the youngster was included in the South Africa tour squad.
Despite Katich being the logical choice to maintain the top-order spot, there have been suggestions that Watson should keep his opening place, but the 28-year-old is adamant he is content to play his role wherever it is.
"I'm so thrilled with the opportunity I've got at the moment to open the batting and contribute with the ball. I'm loving every second of it," said Watson.
"But whether it's opening, whether it's batting wherever the best situation is for the team.
"Hopefully, fingers crossed, Ricky will be right for the Boxing Day Test. I know what it means to him and how much success he's had here in Melbourne. If worst case scenario that he's not available, it doesn't bother me where I bat."
Watson admitted he would like the opportunity to team up with Katich again after their blooming partnership averaged 70 in the series against West Indies.
"I'm loving batting with Simon," he added.
"We are providing a good platform at the moment for the team and Simon is a great guy and I do enjoy batting with him,"
"He's very calm when we're talking. I'd love to be able to continue that partnership. It's something I've never had before. I've never opened.
"It's very important I suppose to develop a good relationship because you are guaranteed to have that partnership every time you go out there."