The Australian media has called for vice-captain Shane Watson's axe following poor showing during the first two Test matches against India, saying no player should be immune to axe no matter how senior they are.
"Watson must undertake a candid self-analysis to figure out where he is going with his career, why he is under-performing and what he must do to warrant being picked for the Ashes," cricket journalist Peter Badel wrote in his column for the Herald Sun.
"Cricket Australia has invested millions in Watson. Not for a second would anyone deny he has talent. But Australian cricket fans are growing tired of Watson's form undulations and incessant injury sagas that seem to take up as much airtime as episodes of Days of Our Lives," he added.
"At the moment, Watson's CA deal is worth about 1.5 million dollar a season. He is one of CA's highest-ranked players. For such remuneration, it is reasonable to expect a world-class match-winner," he further wrote.
"At his best, Watson has the skill-set to emulate Andrew Flintoff and win his country an Ashes series. The problem is Watson is simply not giving Australia bang for its buck," he further mentioned.
Badel added in his column: "In the past 18 months, he is averaging 25.20 as a batsman from 13 Tests. Of his 24 innings in that time, 17 have featured scores of 30 or less."
"There are many players on this tour who have no experience playing in India. But Watson has been playing here for a decade in all sorts of guises, from one-day cricket, to Test matches, to World Cups, to IPL tournaments," he wrote.
"Yet on this tour, as the vice-captain, he has scored 28, 17, 23 and 9. That's 77 runs in four innings at 19.25 for a senior player, batting at No.4, who has an intimate understanding of Indian conditions and the strategies needed to succeed here," he further added.
"There is no reason why Watson, for all his talent and potential, should be immune to the axe himself," he concluded. (ANI)