Sharjah: Shane Watson bats as if he never retired from international cricket.
He is currently the highest run scorer of this year’s Pakistan Super League (PSL) with 161 runs from three matches including two half-centuries.
Watson, 37, who retired from all forms of international cricket in 2016, averages 80.50 and is handling the world’s top T20 bowlers with ease.
On Wednesday night, he bagged the man of the match award for steering Quetta Gladiators to an eight-wicket victory over Multan Sultans at Sharjah Stadium through an elegant 61 runs.
When Gulf News asked Watson what is the secret of his ability to continue the same form he displayed in international cricket, he replied: “You always need a bit of luck going your way in every innings. So in the last couple of innings there are few things which have gone my way at certain times and it helped me to get going. In the end, I am still absolutely loving playing as I always had. When it comes to skill point of view I know I am 37 now and it means I have got a lot of experience under my belt from the technical point of view and also from game point of view. So I’m tapping into that as much as I can then hopefully I can remain consistent.”
Watson then went on to add that the challenge of T20 excites him too, as well as playing against players such as the evergreen Shahid Afridi. “It’s a great format, a great challenge to be out playing always in such tournaments,” he said. “It is really special to play against Afridi, for example, who is someone I’ve always absolutely love playing against and continue to play against someone like him in these tournaments.”
Watson is delighted that Quetta are on a winning run having won all their three matches so far but does not want his team to be carried away by early success.
“We have definitely given ourselves the best chance and that is all that what we can do. This does not guarantee that we are going to win the tournament.
Certainly, we have the best chance with the squad we have. We have got a lot of match winners. We still have got Dwayne Bravo and Sunil Narine to come in as well at some stage in this tournament. We have got Umar Akmal and Rilee Rossouw who are batting really well. We have the match winners and we should remain consistent.”
When asked whether he will play the Pakistan leg of the tournament, Watson said: “ I am still talking with my family and the people whom I need to so I am still not exactly sure what decision will make right now. For me the most important thing is to hit the ground running here as a team. We have an incredibly powerful team made up of many match winners, all right down, and this year more so than even the last few years. So hopefully we can continue on the form that was shown and I can contribute some more runs.”