Watto still has lots to offer: Rod Marsh

Shane Watson remains a limited-overs trump card for Australia with selectors not wanting to pension off the allrounder.

Watson played the opening Ashes Test but sat out the next three after being dropped in favour of understudy Mitch Marsh.

The 34-year-old’s Test career is likely to be over if Marsh, 11 years his junior, remains fit over the next year.

However, Watson was picked in a 14-man squad for the one-day series in England that follows the Ashes.

“I still think he’s got a lot to offer Australian cricket,” chairman of selectors Rod Marsh said.

“The thing about Shane is he’s got loads and loads of ability, as we all know.

“I just hope he has a fantastic one-day series. He’s an important player for us.”

Watson and 32-year-old George Bailey, both part of Australia’s World Cup squad, were retained in a youthful squad.

Marsh dropped Watson during the World Cup, prompting suggestions that Watson’s international career could be over.

Instead the burly right-hander was recalled for the following game at the expense of Mitch Marsh.

Watson then played a leading role in the side’s successful title push.

Marsh suggested Watson and Bailey, both former ODI captains, would help Steve Smith find his feet as captain of the ODI side.

“They’ve played a lot of cricket and they’re both very good leaders in the short form of the game,” he said.

“They’ll be important in our quest to remain at the top of the tree in one-day cricket.”

Some of Watson’s greatest innings have come in the coloured clothes.

Watson will play the Big Bash League with Sydney Thunder and, barring a drop off in form, is likely to be part of Australia’s squad for next year’s T20 World Cup.

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