Generally when an Australian batsman retires, bowlers around the globe breathe a sigh of relief. However, since Sunday when news of Shane Watson’s retirement from the longest format of the game hit the headlines, swing bowlers world over have plunged into a state of gloom. James Anderson reportedly broke down after his wife broke the news. Dale Steyn cancelled all engagements for the day including a date with his girlfriend, as a sense of despondency overwhelmed him. Even Ashok Dinda and Stuart Binny were cut up with the news.
Anderson wailed, ”I was expecting Shane Watson to play another couple of Ashes series before he retired. I just recently completed 400 international Test wickets and badly wanted to get to 500. But, now with Watson gone, I will have to reconsider my plans. I also want to request England Cricket Board to plan a few more series versus India in our backyard so that I can take the wickets of Kohli with the outswinger and Rohit’s with the inswinger.”
Binny, on the other hand, said Watson’s retirement has robbed him off the chance of getting 50 Test wickets. “Getting to the first Test wicket was a hard slog but the boys assured me that I can help myself to a handful of Shane Watson LBWs when the Aussies tour India and race away to 50. Now all my dreams lie in tatters,” bemoaned the all-rounder (?).
Shane Watson has been known for his inability to play against a swinging ball especially the one that comes into the pads at an angle and hits his front pad. His pad, on the other hand, is, no doubt, a relieved commodity.
Legends from yesteryears also reflected on Watson’s legacy. Wasim Akram, the sultan of swing, said, ”The only regret I’ve had in my entire life is to not have got a chance to bowl at Watson bhai in Test matches. I would’ve had at least 100 more wickets!”
Shane Watson was miffed after reading this report and threatened to take the IPL by storm next season by bullying the likes of Mishra and Chawla on flat Indian tracks. However, our reporters politely informed him that Rajasthan Royals have been banned for the next two seasons.