Tuesday, 04 December 2012 12:49
PERTH: Australian coach Mickey Arthur says Ricky Ponting's retirement opens the door for Shane Watson to drop further down the batting order, but would not be drawn on the contenders to replace him.
Watson returned from a calf injury in the third Test against South Africa, making 10 and 25 batting at number three as South Africa won by 309 runs to take the series 1-0.
Despite establishing himself as a Test opener in recent years, there has been speculation about Watson's best role in the team and his ability to continue to perform with both bat and ball given his long injury history.
He only bowled nine overs in each innings in Perth but Arthur said the retirement of Ponting, who batted at four, offered the opportunity to drop the powerful right-hander down a slot for the Sri Lanka series.
Arthur said the selectors were keen to replace Ponting with a batsman who ...