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Australia's Watson relishing opening gamble

Australia's Shane Watson said he was relishing his latest challenge in a career which has so far not gone to plan.

cricket Updated: Aug 02, 2009 20:32 IST

Australia's Shane Watson said he was relishing his latest challenge in a career which has so far not gone to plan.

Watson, who made his name as a bowling all-rounder, surprisingly opened the batting in the third Ashes Test against England and top-scored with 62 in his team's first innings.

"I was very nervous, opening the batting did increase the pressure on me but it was a great challenge," he told a news conference on Saturday after the third day's play was abandoned because of rain.

Watson's injury problems have limited him to nine tests in four years and he is desperate to make the most of his opportunity after being called into the side in place of Phillip Hughes.

"My career has never really gone to plan but I am going to do everything I can to take this chance," the 28-year-old said.

Watson said he had made technical adjustments to his batting which had equipped him better to deal with the new ball and that was evident in his innings on Thursday when he mixed tight defence with trademark drives and pulls.

"My technique was maybe a bit complicated so I have worked hard at simplifying it," he said. "I really enjoyed facing the new ball and I was pleased with the way I played."

Watson fell to the first ball of the second day, lbw to Graham Onions.

"I didn't sleep too well, going over in my mind what I was going to do to make a really big score," he said. "It wasn't a great ball that got me out, I just stuffed up. But I will learn from it."

(Editing by Clare Fallon; To query or comment on this story email sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com)