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Watson to replace Ponting at number four in Oz Test team

Johannesburg , Sat, 08 Dec 2012 ANI

Johannesburg, Dec 8(ANI): All rounder Shane Watson has claimed he will be given the first chance to fill the opening in Australia's batting order left by Ricky Ponting's retirement, and added he will bat at number four in next week's first Test against Sri Lanka.

Recalled Phillip Hughes is expected to bat at first drop in a reshuffled Australian top order for the Hobart Test, starting next Friday.

Vice-captain Watson confirmed in Brisbane that he would drop down one spot to number four in the Australian order.

"(Coach) Mickey Arthur talked to me at the end of the last Test to say the way it was looking, they were going to move me down to four. It's taken me a few days to get my head around that, but it means I can bowl a few more overs," Sports24 quoted Watson, as saying.

"In the last Test match, I know Michael (Clarke) in the second innings was a bit hesitant to bowl me a few times towards the latter part of their innings, just to give me the chance to be as fresh as I could going into bat," he added.

"The ultimate aim is to be able to contribute with both bat and ball throughout the whole Test match and not be held back. Batting at four will give me that extra time to freshen up," he said. (ANI)

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