Back in August 2009 I spoke to Michelle Crowther on ABC radio in Darwin, and I expressed concern about Shane Watson. You know things are bleak when you're relying on him. Agree? Much has come to pass since then, and I've almost come to terms with him opening for Australia now.
And now, by lack of alternatives, it seems he's leadership material.
While Michael Hussey may, this week, seem a reasonable option, it's not ideal. Firstly, age is not on his side (he'll be 36 in May). His current form has been nothing if not surprising, so he's not exactly consistent. Making him captain wouldn't be a step forward, and we desperately need to go forward. Still, maybe a potential interim option while tryouts are held in the gym for replacements for the other half-dozen 'tards who have long outstayed their welcome, and never really had a use.
Then there's our illustrious vice captain. While Michael Clarke is first in line to the throne, surely, surely that cannot eventuate. Granted it's not enough for the reason to be "because he's Michael Clarke" (though you and I both know it totally is). No, his performance speaks for itself. He's out of form, he's Michael Clarke, he's injury prone, he's not leadership material and he's Michael Clarke. It would be akin to when Mr G made Toby, the kid with Down Syndrome, the star of the arena spectacular on Summer Heights High. You were horrified that they went there, it put you on edge waiting for it all to go wrong, you might have laughed uncomfortably, but you knew it was a mockery and it just wasn't right. Enough said.
Which brings us to Shane Watson. Firstly, he's not even 30. I was actually surprised to find that out, but there we go. So he's got a few years left in him, if he can leave his injuries at the door. Secondly, he's reasonably consistent. It's a sad day when we're picking our leaders from those who are 'reasonably consistent'. Sure, he doesn't seem overly bright but then, we all know he's capable of a hissy fit that would make Punter proud, and that seems to be an essential selection criteria. Though it's probably fair to say we'd use all our referrals up within the first over, with Watson in charge.
So there we have it. It's not so much about why it should be Watto as why it shouldn't be the others. Next question is, will Ponting have vanished into the ether by the end of today? Or will it be post Sydney?
Truth is, he should have left on a high, and handed over as he won the urn back in 2006. But no, like an out-of-touch politician he's clung to power in a seriously undignified fashion. I wonder if he regrets that now.
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