Sydney [ Images ] Sixers boss Stuart Clark has slammed the decision to withdraw Shane Watson [ Images ] midway through their Twenty20 [ Images ] Champions League [ Images ] campaign in South Africa [ Images ] whereas Cricket Australia [ Images ] has said that they began negotiations with the Sixers in August about the possibility of resting the all rounder from the Champions League.
Clark is furious that Watson is being brought home mid-tournament with the Sixers fighting for $2.5 million in prize money.
"We're disappointed by it all. They want Shane to prepare for Test cricket. I understand those reasons -- I just wish someone had told me this 15 months ago," Clark said.
He claimed that the Sixers were given only three days notice but Cricket Australia's high performance manager Pat Howard insisted the conversation has been ongoing for months.
"It's interesting isn't it because obviously we've been managing Shane for a fair while now. He didn't go to the UAE for Australia's one-day tour of Pakistan and that didn't have as much coverage as this is getting," Howard said.
"Stuart and I first met in August as I said we were monitoring these workloads very closely and we're across this. He's right, the final decision wasn't made until recently."
Test captain Michael Clarke [ Images ] endorsed CA's move to bring back Watson.
"I back the decision if we think it's in the best interests of the Australian Test team, to bring him back, to get him prepared for that first Test match (against South Africa)," Clarke said.
Photograph: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images/Getty Images