Australia cruising towards last four after emphatic win over South Africa
13:47 GMT, 30 September 2012
Tournament top-scorer Shane Watson again provided a telling contribution as Australia beat South Africa by eight wickets to stay bang on course for an ICC World Twenty20 semi-final.
Watson added 70 runs to Xavier Doherty's three for 20 with the ball as Australia won their second successive Super Eight match at the R Premadasa Stadium, by chasing down the Proteas' 146 for five with 14 balls to spare.
Watson had shared a century opening stand with David Warner in Friday's success against India, but this time lost his first-wicket partner early.
Main man: Shane Watson was in fine form as Australia beat South Africa
It did not faze him, though, as he reached his third half-century in four innings with his second six – over square-leg off Wayne Parnell – to go with six fours from 35 balls.
Doherty had earlier given Australia a wonderful start after they had won the toss.
The slow left-armer had South Africa eight for two in the third over – Richard Levi somehow playing inside the line to be bowled leg-stump for a duck and then Jacques Kallis edging behind to go cheaply too.
It would have been 16 for three had Michael Hussey managed a direct hit from point to run out JP Duminy by yards.
Marching on together: Australia are heading towards the semi-finals
But Watson saw off Hashim Amla with his medium-pace and doubled up with another big wicket – AB de Villiers caught at cover – when he returned for a second spell.
It was therefore only a late flurry from Robin Peterson and Farhaan Behardien, in an unbroken stand of 60, that kept South Africa competitive.
Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn then bowled well with the new ball, and the pressure told on Warner.
He responded to three tight overs by making room to hit Morkel but failed to make contact and was bowled middle-stump.
Toil: South Africa struggled to cope with the Australians' batting
Australia did not manage a boundary until Kallis replaced Steyn for the fifth over, and Watson immediately cut him for four.
The destructive opener did not put a foot wrong until he mishit Peterson on 52 but escaped as Parnell could not quite hold a tough catch, diving in from wide long-off.
Watson eventually holed out off Peterson at long-on to end a stand of 99 with Hussey (45no).
But South Africa still never came close to getting off the mark in a group currently dominated by the Australians – and Watson in particular.