Watson stars as Australia defeat Pakistan

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/w/watson-wt20.jpg' class='caption'> Australia beat Pakistan by 34 runs in their World Twenty20 match on Sunday.

Updated: May 03, 2010 18:14 IST
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Shane Watson top-scored with 81 as Australia punished lax Pakistan fielding to win their opening World Twenty20 match by a convincing 34 run margin on Sunday.

Man-of-the-match Watson's innings was the cornerstone of Australia's 191 all out, made after captain Michael Clarke won the toss.

But the all-rounder was dropped on 11 by Misbah-ul-Haq and missed on 20, again by Misbah, who couldn't get a hand on a skied chance after running back at long-on, with Mohammad Hafeez the unlucky bowler on both occasions.

Watson made defending champions Pakistan pay by striking four sixes and seven fours in his blistering 49-ball innings and with David Hussey he put on 98 in under nine overs for the third wicket.

Hussey dropped on 18 at long-off by Salman Butt, a relatively easy chance, went on to make 53 off 29 balls with five sixes and two fours.

Hussey was especially severe on seamer Mohammad Sami, striking him for 28 runs in the 16th over with the batsman striking four sixes, including three in a row.

Australia's total was effectively made off 19 overs as their innings ended in extraordinary fashion with a five-wicket maiden from Mohammad Aamer but by then the damage had been done.

"It's a very good start from the boys, 191 runs in 19 overs," said Clarke "The bowlers then did a great job in the first six overs and the boys caught really well as well."

Watson added: "It's nice when you do get a life, especially in Twenty20, it's nice to get a reprieve."

Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi said his team had been outplayed in all departments.

"We missed some opportunities and the pacers struggled with their line.

"They (Australia) played very well, they batted, bowled and fielded well."

Pakistan lost Kamran Akmal for nought to the first legitimate ball of their reply when he sliced Dirk Nannes to Steven Smith at short third man.

Salman Butt (15) miscued an attempted hook off fast bowler Shaun Tait and was caught by David Hussey before left-arm quick Mitchell Johnson's second ball proved too much for Mohammad Hafeez, who pulled straight to deep square leg.

Australia, holding their catches, had reduced Pakistan to 34 for three inside five overs and they never looked like recovering from such a start.

Tait then had the satisfaction of bowling hard-hitting batsman Afridi for 33 before finishing the match by dismissing Saeed Ajmal off the last ball to finish with figures of three wickets for 20 runs.

Misbah top-scored for Pakistan with 41 in a total of 157 all out.

Earlier, David Hussey holed out off Ajmal and, three balls later, the off-spinner had Watson lbw.

There was a bizarre finish to the Australia innings as five wickets fell for no runs in the final over, from left-arm quick Aamer.

Brad Haddin was caught off the first ball, Mitchell Johnson clean bowled off the second with both Michael Hussey and Steven Smith run out by direct hits from wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal as they tried to run byes.

Tait survived the fifth ball but was bowled off the last for nought.

Aamer finished with three for 23, with Ajmal taking three for 34.

Pakistan defeated Bangladesh by 21 runs in the first Group A match here on Saturday and both Pakistan and Australia will qualify for the second round if the Aussies beat Bangladesh in Barbados on Wednesday.

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