London, Sep 7 (IANS) Australian opener David Warner said on Monday that recently retired teammate Shane Watson is a “role model for kids”.
Watson retired from Test cricket on Sunday after having played 59 matches for Australia in a career spanning a decade, but will continue to wear the green and gold jersey in limited overs cricket.
Warner, who will fly home alongside Watson after he was ruled out of the One-Day International (ODI) series against England with a broken thumb, paid tribute to the broad shouldered all-rounder.
“I’ve had the privilege of playing alongside him, I’ve learned a lot from Shane and he’s definitely a role model for kids,” Warner was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.
“He has been unfortunate with injuries but he’s had a great career, and he’s always a guy who wears his heart on his sleeve and every time he goes out there for Australia, he wears that Baggy Green with pride and dignity.”
Watson played his last Test in the 2015 Ashes opener in Cardiff in July before he was dropped for the remainder of the series, watching on as Australia surrendered the urn 2-3 to England.
But it was his latest injury setback — a right calf strain that cut short his ODI series — which made Watson realise that the effort required to continue playing all three formats of the game was too hard to manage at his age and with his fragile body.
“I don’t have that real fight in me, especially for Test cricket knowing the lengths physically I have to go to, and mentally and technically as well, to be able to get back to my best again in Test cricket. I just know it’s the right time,” Watson had said on Sunday.
“When things aren’t going your way and you’re in and out of the team and you’re unsure, it comes to a time where you do think about what’s ahead.
“At the stage of his career where he’s got a young family, he’s got a lot of white-ball cricket still to play I think, and I hope he does keep playing white-ball cricket. He thinks he might have had to give up one form and that’s Test cricket,” he added.