Colombo: Shane Watson's brilliant form with bat and ball has propelled Australia's unbeaten run in the World Twenty20, but the star all-rounder warned rivals he was not finished yet. Watson's extraordinary display has won him Man-of-the-Match awards in all four of Australia's games and made him both the top run-getter and leading wicket-taker in the tournament.
Having thrashed India and South Africa in their first two Super Eight matches, Australia must still beat Pakistan on Tuesday to qualify for the semi-finals from group two. Watson, the 31-year-old vice-captain, said he needed to continue with the same intensity if Australia was to win the one major title that has eluded them so far.
"I know how important every game is to us and, in a World Cup, there is no game where you can take your foot off the pedal," Watson said after the eight-wicket win over South Africa on Sunday night.
"I know how important it is for me to continue doing the simple keys and cues that I have got for both batting and bowling, and be able to hopefully replicate my deeds in one game after another.
"In the end, it is so important to keep the momentum going. At the moment, things are going really well for all of us as a team.
"We are really up for every game because we really want to show ourselves how good a Twenty20 team we are."
Watson has not looked back since taking a wicket with his first ball in the tournament, removing Ireland captain William Porterfield with the opening delivery of the match. He finished with 3-26 in that game and then hammered 51 off 30 balls with five fours and three sixes to fashion Australia's easy seven-wicket win. In the next game against the West Indies, Watson claimed 2-29 and hit an unbeaten 41 off 24 balls before rain forced the game to be abandoned with Australia 17 runs ahead on the Duckworth-Lewis method.
Watson was in rollicking form in the opening Super Eights match against India, taking 3-34 before smashing seven sixes and two fours in 72 from 42 balls during the nine-wicket victory. And on Sunday night he decimated South Africa with 2 for 29 and 70 off 47 balls with the bat.
Asked the reason for his success, Watson remarked: "Things are just falling my way at the moment I suppose."
Watson leads the batting chart in the tournament with 234 runs in four matches, an average of 78, a strike rate of almost 164 per 100 balls and the most number of sixes (15). He is also the leading bowler in the competition with 10 wickets, one ahead of Sri Lankan spinner Ajantha Mendis.
Australia's T20 skipper George Bailey was delighted at Watson's form."I think he's really set himself to be the man of the series, to be the person who leads Australia as far as he can in this tournament," Bailey said.
"When you see how he plays this form of the game, he's almost the complete cricketer."