Australian all-rounder Shane Watson has admitted that he was ‘lucky’ to get through Pakistani paceman Wahab Riaz’s fiery spell during their World Cup quarterfinal tie on Friday.
Watson ended the game on an unbeaten 64 off 66 balls but he was dropped on four by Rahat Ali at fine leg off a 145 kilometer-per-hour bouncer from Riaz, as the veteran Australian all-rounder was under physical siege. Riaz charged in, peppering the batsman with a series of short-pitched deliveries and sarcastically applauding and even blowing Watson a kiss at one stage, Sport24 reported.
Following Australia’s six-wicket win at the Adelaide Oval over Pakistan that saw them set up a semifinal clash against defending champions India, Watson said that Riaz gave it everything, adding that the left-armer was right on the money and there were some really nasty balls in there. Watson admitted that he was lucky to get through that spell.
Riaz finished with two for 54 but he should have had more wickets, with Sohail Khan displaying similar butter-fingers to Ali when he dropped Glenn Maxwell late in the innings.
Riaz said that Ali’s dropped catch was a crucial moment, adding that they would have had Watson and a wicket to put more pressure on Australia. He added that they watched how the Australian guys play and had a chat before the game and put plans in place.
Riaz claimed that he knew Watson was not so good with short balls so he knew that he had to attack, adding that the plans were successful at times but unfortunately Pakistan could not win the game.