Former Australian all-rounder Shane Watson became a household name after shining for the Rajasthan Royals in the inaugural season of IPL. He secured the man of the tournament in 2008 for his all-round show as Shane Warne-led Rajasthan Royals lifted the trophy. Since 2018, Shane Watson has been with the Chennai Super Kings, whose captain he admired even when playing for the Royals.
Shane Watson has been an integral part of the yellow army ever since he donned their jersey. Watson was woefully out of form in 2016 and 2017 when playing for Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore. With the all-rounder opening for Chennai in the next two seasons, he was back to his best. The Queensland-born mustered a blistering hundred in the 2018 edition final to steer Chennai to their third IPL title.
Shane Watson hailed CSK for placing faith in him and lauded as an incredible franchise to play against. He revealed that when playing for Rajasthan against the Super Kings, he appreciated Stephen Fleming and MS Dhoni in particular, for the way he carried and conducted himself. Watson added that he feels fortunate to be associated in the last few years of his cricket with a franchise that looks after people unbelievably well.
“CSK had full faith in me, they’re an incredible franchise to play against. When I played for Royals against Chennai, I always admired Stephen Fleming, and MS as well, the way he carried himself on and off the field. To be able to play at CSK and experience the way the franchise is run incredibly well from top-down was a very special experience. I do feel fortunate to have this part of my career of the IPL in the last few years, to play for a franchise that looks after everyone so unbelievably well,” the Queensland-born cricketer said as quoted by Hindustan Times.
“The 2018 season was one of my better seasons” : Shane Watson
The 38-year old added that the 2018 edition was one of his better ones; however, he thanked CSK for sticking by him last year when he struggled. Shane Watson opened up by saying that in any other team he would have been dropped; however, the management’s faith in him eventually paid off. Watson was not in the runs in the first ten matches before cracking 96 off 53 deliveries against Sunrisers Hyderabad. He also smashed 80 in the final; however, could not get Chennai over the finish line.
“The 2018 season was one of my better seasons, it wasn’t just the final [where Watson made a match-winning century]. But last year, certainly CSK stuck with me through thick and thin. In every other team that I’ve been in, I may have been dropped a couple of games before I got the runs against the Sunrisers Hyderabad. Just them backing me, knowing my next few good innings were around the corner, [was amazing]. Only world-class leaders will really stick by and have the confidence to do that, given the calibre of the players we’ve got,” Watson mentioned.
The right-handed batsman further said that it was a learning experience for him, teaching him that if someone has ability, belief in their talents, they will come good at some stage.
“That was a great learning for me as well, to be honest, to show that if you believe in someone, you believe in their ability, because you’ve seen what they’ve been able to do time and time again and that they will come good at some stage,” he added further.