Shane Watson has responded to Michael Clarke’s claim that Watson was part of a group that was “like a tumour” in Australia’s cricket team. Clarke has been quoted as describing Watson’s influence on the Australian Test team as like a “cancer”, a reference that came up in leaked documents from former coach Mickey Arthur’s court case with Cricket Australia after he was sacked in the third Test against in Mohali 2013.
In a television interview with Australia’s Channel Nine to promote Clarke’s autobiography, the retired Clarke spoke of stormy relationships during his long career.
“I said that there is a number of players, a group in this team at the moment, that are like a tumour and if we don’t fix it, it’s going to turn into cancer,” Clarke said. “Shane was one of those players, yes,” said Clarke.
Watson has hit back Clarke’s comment. “For me, I think it was more a reflection of the person he is more than what it was directed towards me,” Watson said.
“In the end, it is really disappointing that things like that start to come out two or three years later on when we are all very content in retirement,” he added.
Clarke denied singling out the all-rounder as a “cancer” on the team, a claim made by Arthur in documents connected to legal action over his sacking three years ago.
But he admitted saying Watson was one of a number of players who were “like a tumour, and if we don’t fix it, it’s going to turn into cancer”.