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It's Gayle versus Watson as Windies take on Aussies
PTI
Colombo, October 04, 2012
First Published: 16:25 IST(4/10/2012)
Last Updated: 16:35 IST(4/10/2012)
West Indies cricketers Johnson Charles (L) and Chris Gayle run between the wickets during the ICC Twenty20 Cricket World Cup's Super Eight match between New Zealand and West Indies at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Pallekele. AFP Photo/Prakash Singh

A determined Australian outfit will be aiming to eliminate the 'Chris Gayle factor' when they meet a rejuvenated West Indies in the semi-final of the ICC World Twenty20 in Colombo on Friday.

For Australia, it will be a chance to get into the final for the second time in succession after the 2010 edition and once again stamp their class as world's premier cricketing outfit.

For West Indies, it's more about the identity and trying to fight the inner demons which have affected their cricket since late 80's.

A berth in the final of a global event can be a big boost for the Caribbean nation where basketball, athletics and soccer have captured the imagination of the masses.

Therefore, it's redemption time for both the teams although their circumstances are entirely different. Behind every 'Big Battle', there's always a mini-battle that spices up a marquee contest.

Friday when the two teams lock horns, it will also be a battle between Shane Watson and Chris Gayle.

If Watson, who has won four man-of-the-match awards in five matches will play a key role in Australian set-up, Gayle can change the complexion of the match at any point of time with his ferocious power-hitting.

By sheer statistics, Watson is miles ahead of Gayle having scored 242 runs in five matches along with 11 wickets which makes him the favourite to win the 'Player of the Tournament' award.

However, Gayle who has so far hit 10 sixes in five matches, has scored two 50's and on his day can tear apart any bowling attack in the world.

The law of averages did catch up with Watson in the last match against Pakistan but that means that he will be hungrier than ever to take Aussies to the summit clash.


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