Watson credits success to IPL

It was a massive turning point

Shane Watson

The 28-year-old, who has played less than 90 one-dayers since his debut seven years back after being laid low by a succession of unrelated injuries, credited the Indian Premier League for his massive turnaround at the international level.

Watson played under Shane Warne at the victorious Rajasthan Royals in the inaugural edition of the IPL and was named the player of the tournament for his consistency with bat and ball. “There no doubt that the IPL is what has got me back on the field,” Watson said.

“That’s what really got my confidence up as a player. It also got me back in the Australian team quicker than I thought. The IPL was a massive turning point in my career. To be able to play on such a big stage when I was not even playing for Australia was a massive opportunity to learn through the captaincy and coaching ability of Warne. It has helped me in bigger games as well to control my emotions. The IPL played a big role in my development. I’d been in and out through injuries and it came along at the perfect time in my career. It was one of the most enjoyable things I have ever been involved in, but today is another amazing opportunity as well.”

Having once confessed to being ‘overawed’ by the big occasion, Watson revealed how he had got a grip on things. “The thing I have learned playing in the bigger games so far is that in the end, it is just another game of cricket,” he pointed out. “You have got to be in a good place mentally. Previously, I used to take it as more than a game. What stands out is the semifinal of the World Cup in 2007 against South Africa. I was so pumped up to do well and I didn’t do too well, I was overawed by the situation. It’s part of the process of learning how to deal with those situations. Today, to be involved in such a great win is one of the better feelings I have had in my career.”

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