Cricket Australia Items/news/2013/6/2/top-of-the-order-tempts-watson

Top of the order tempts Watson

UPDATED 02 June, 2013 11:38AM AEST | by Greig Johnston 17

Shane Watson said he is unsure if he will open the batting in the Ashes series, after his star turn in Australia's ODI win against West Indies.

The all-rounder was brilliant in Australia's four-wicket win in Cardiff on Saturday, blasting 135 off 98 balls as his team chased down the Windies' 256 with 67 balls to spare in their first warm-up game for the ICC Champions Trophy.

Watson, who hasn't opened the batting for the Test side since November 2011, said he enjoys playing at the top of the order for the one-day side, but has no idea if selectors will want him to reprise that role in the five-day format.

"I certainly do like opening the batting, there's no doubt about that," Watson said.

"It's nice to get out there in English conditions again and try and spend some time in the middle.

"After coming from India, especially, the conditions are a little bit different here, especially with the newer ball.

"All I know is that at this point in time I'm opening the batting in one-day cricket throughout this Champions Trophy, so they haven't talked to me at all about what the future plans are (for the Tests)."

Watson said the Australians had learnt plenty from their last one-day excursion to England, when they were put to sword by the home side in a 4-0 series defeat last year.

"There's no doubt the last one-day series here England played very well and we didn't play particularly well, especially batting wise," he said.

"We learnt a lot as a group, there's no doubt about that.

"We've got a few guys who hadn't really played too much cricket here in England.

"I think it was learning curve, a big learning curve, for everyone.

"Me personally, I'm continuing to learn all the time and the more you face of the English bowlers the more you get an idea about exactly  how they're going to attack myself and every individual in our team as well."

The other Champions Trophy warm-up match on Saturday saw India take a five-wicket win over Sri Lanka in a run-fest at Edgbaston.

India won the toss and sent Sri Lanka in and, led by openers Kusal Perera (82) and Tillakaratne Dilshan (84) - who both retired to allow their teammates time in the middle - they scored 333-5 from their 50 overs.

But India chased down the total with six balls remaining, thanks to centuries from Virat Kohli (144) and Dinesh Karthik (106 not out).

Australia v West Indies scorecard

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 02 June, 2013 10:44AM AEST

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