New Delhi: When the current Ashes started and Aussies found themselves on the mat, he was called cancer, selfish and what not. Nothing was going his way as despite shuffling him in the batting order he could not produce runs Australia needed badly. But finally baby faced Shane Watson produced one of the most golden innings of his career in the fifth Test at the Oval Wednesday that will surely silence his critics at least for a while.
Watson's hurricane 176 came on day one. It took him three years and 48 innings to make his third test hundred.
So determined was Watson that even after being badly hit by Stuart Broad's bouncer on his head when he was on 91, the burly all-rounder got up to complete the task he had set up for himself.
Watson's hundred was up in just 114 balls and ultimately he fell just 24 runs short of a double century off 247 balls, with 25 fours and a six. His charge towards a double century was ended by a stunning outfield catch from Kevin Pietersen off Broad .
He shared 107-run second-wicket stand with Chris Rogers (23) and 145-run partnership for the fourth wicket with Steve Smith (66 not out).
Watson's stellar hundred is the first time an Australian No.3 has posted a three-figure score since Shaun Marsh against Sri Lanka in 2011.
Watson's century somewhat solved Australia's batting woes at the top order.
Watson's ton means he'll be hard to ignore for the pivotal No.3 position for the home Ashes starting in November.