Allrounder thought of dead former team-mate October 27, 2006

Watson feared heart attack when pains struck

Cricinfo staff

Shane Watson has recovered from a severe stomach problem © Getty Images

Shane Watson feared he was having a heart attack when he was rushed to a Chandigarh hospital with chest pains that turned out to be severe gastritis. He said thoughts of his former Tasmania team-mate Scott Mason, who died last year from a heart attack aged 28, were running through his mind when the illness struck on Tuesday.

Watson suddenly felt sick after a team meeting and said he was "just about crumpled up on the floor" of his hotel room before he was taken to a hospital specialising in heart treatment. "We'd had a team meeting and I went back to bed for an hour or so before we were leaving to go to training," Watson told The Age. "I just started to get really bad pains in my chest and it gradually got worse and worse.

"The things that were going through my head were that my Dad has already had a triple heart bypass, so I was hoping my heart was right. I was also thinking about my mate Scott Mason. I'd never had chest pains before, so I didn't know what it was."

He said Mason's death last April had deeply affected him. "That was really hard because Dad had a bypass and he was fine after it," he said. "After Scott had his heart operation, I thought that everything would be fine with him as well, like it was with Dad."

Watson, who has opened in the previous two games, said one positive from the timing of his illness was that he had time to recover before Australia's Champions Trophy clash with India on Sunday. "There's no reason why I wouldn't play," he said. "The great thing was that it happened a fair way out from the game so I can get a bit of rest and make sure everything is right for the game."