Ponting backs Watson in Australia crisis

Last updated 07:02 15/03/2013
Shane Watson
Getty Images
RETURNING: Australia vice-captain Shane Watson is heading back to India.

Relevant offers

Cricket

Trott stands down again after stress relapse Peter Moores to be named new England coach Germon nervous ahead of World Cup opener Daniel Vettori's Bangalore crush Delhi for win Firebirds want recognition to go with the trophy? Mark Craig a Volt from the blue for Black Caps Mitchell Johnson may quite T20 and ODI cricket Hagley Oval set for busy international summer Anderson needs NZ clearance to play in IPL Patel in a spin over decision to miss Caps tour

Suspended Australia vice-captain Shane Watson received the backing of former skipper Ricky Ponting on Thursday as crisis surrounding the team rumbled on.

Watson, along with three other players, was suspended for the third test in India after failing to respond to a request from Australia's management for feedback on how the team could be improved.

Cricket Australia high performance manager Pat Howard described Watson as "sometimes" a team player but Ponting, one of Australia's most successful captains, begged to differ.

"Shane worked as hard as anybody around his cricket, there's no doubt about that," Ponting was quoted in Australian media.

"He's obviously made a blue here - I don't like to refer to it as homework because it wasn't homework - not getting his tasks done that were given to him by the coach.

"... I've never known him to be anything other than a very good team player and a great bloke to have around your team.

"I loved every moment that I played with Watto."

Mitchell Johnson, James Pattinson and Usman Khawaja were also dropped for the same reason.

Watson, who was initially thought to be considering his test career, has returned to Australia to be with his pregnant wife.

Describing his suspension as "extremely harsh" Watson hit back at Howards's comment this week.

"All I can really say is go around and ask every person I've ever played cricket with and that will give you the best indication of whether I'm a team man or not," he said.

"Pat Howard doesn't particularly know me very well. He's come from a rugby background and hasn't been in and around cricket very long."

Ad Feedback

- Reuters

Special offers
Opinion poll

Who's the best test cricket captain?

Michael Clarke (Australia)

Mushfiqur Rahim (Bangladesh)

Alastair Cook (England)

MS Dhoni (India)

Brendon McCullum (New Zealand)

Misbah-ul-Haq (Pakistan)

Graeme Smith (South Africa)

Angelo Mathews (Sri Lanka)

Darren Sammy (West Indies)

Brendan Taylor (Zimbabwe)

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content