Shane Watson produced another all-round master class to help Australia strengthen their chances of reaching the t20 World Cup semi finals thanks to a eight wicket victory of South Africa at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.
Having picked up two wickets during South Africa’s innings Watson helped put the Aussies into a winnings position thanks to a quick fire 70 from 47 balls which included eight boundaries and two sixes before he was dismissed by Robin Peterson (1-41) in the 14th over.
Michael Hussey (45), Cameron White (21) and David Warner (5) offered support as Australia completed victory with 14 balls to spare to leave them on the verge of the semi finals after winning both of their Super Eights matches so far.
It proved to be a poor day for South Africa who are now left hoping for an Indian victory against Pakistan in the late match in Group 2 in order to keep their faint hopes of reaching the last four alive.
Having suffered defeat against the Aussies, the South African’s can be knocked out of the tournament if Pakistan win, a victory for the Pakistanis will also ensure the Aussies and Pakistan seal their places in the semi finals.
Having been put into bat the Proteas were soon on the back foot thanks to Xavier Doherty (3-20) who picked up two early wickets to leave South Africa 8-2 after Richard Levi (0) and Jacques Kallis (6) were both dismissed inside the first 3 overs.
JP Duminy (30) and AB de Villiers (21) offered some resistant’s but whenever a partnership looked settled Australia struck to leave the South Africans having to build again with a new batsman at the crease.
The impressive Shane Watson (2-29) picked up another two wickets before a much needed partnership of 60 between Robin Peterson (32) and Farhaan Behardien (31) during the closing stages of the innings gave South Africa fresh hope after they posted a total of 145-5.