Windies eves sail into final

| February 14, 2013
Staff Writer - Archi

Staff Writer – Archi

The West Indies women are on the verge of making history. The spirited lot stunned five-time champions Australia by eight runs in a thrilling Super Six match to storm into the final of the ICC Women’s World Cup in Mumbai in India on Wednesday.

With Australia already in Sunday’s final, West Indies had to win this match to block out the chances of the other two contenders, England and New Zealand. And they did that in style.

While it was a day of many firsts for the Windies — who successfully defended a modest total of 164 to not only record their first ever win against the Aussies, but also seal their inaugural World Cup final berth — for Australia, it was their first loss of the tournament.

Having restricted West Indies to a mere 164 — at a venue that saw previous high-scoring encounters involving them — Australia, it seems, had done all the hard work. They were again slow and steady during the chase and were sitting pretty at 130 for four after 38 overs, but the middle-order and the lower middle-order collapsed after the departure of Alex Blackwell (45).

After the initial shock of losing opener Meg Lanning and Rachel Haynes at 32, Blackwell, along with Jess Cameron (39) took stock of the situation and added 47 runs for the third wicket. After adding 41 runs with skipper Jodie Fields (19), Blackwell fell lbw to offie Stafanie Taylor. She was followed by Fields, Julie Hunter and Renee Chappell in quick succession, as Australia found themselves in trouble at 140-8.

West Indies Women Cricket. Shanel Daley

Shanel Daley. Photo courtesy

With 25 runs to go, Osborne along with Megan Schutt, strove hard to keep her team in the game. However, medium-pacer Shanel Daley put paid to their hopes of staying unbeaten in the tournament as she ran out Schutt at 156 and got Osborne caught behind to wrap up the Aussie innings with ten balls remaining. For the Windies, Daley and Taylor scalped three and two wickets respectively.

Earlier in the day, West Indies won the toss and elected to bat. The Australian bowling unit, spearheaded by pacers Schutt and Holly Ferling, dismantled the top and middle-order, bundling out Windies in just 47 overs.

All-rounder Deandra Dottin (60) was the only batter to excel as she blasted a quickfire half-century, hitting 10 boundaries and a six. Her knock kept the Windies in the game.

Along with Shaquana Quintyne (15), player of the match, Dottin, stitched together a 43-run partnership for the eighth wicket. Apart from them, the only other players to reach double figures were Natasha McLean (26) and Tremayne Smartt (10).

“Words can’t express what I am feeling right now. I am completely overwhelmed. We have been through a lot as a team. Its God’s blessings. We just have to be grateful and thankful to him,” Windies skipper Merrissa Aguilleira said.

West Indies Women Cricket. Merissa Aguilleira.

Skipper Merissa Aguilleira. Photo courtesy

“We executed our plans well. We would like to have played the final here, it’s a lucky venue for us,” added the Windies wicketkeeper

Aguilleira said Shemaine Campbelle said after the first innings that there were enough runs on the board to defend and true to her words the Aussies crumbled under pressure.

“Campbell said runs are already on the board. All we have to do is go out there and defend it. Once pressure is there, things can happen and that’s exactly what we did.”

Looking ahead to the final, she said “since we have been to the World Cup, we haven’t brought out our A game. The final is definitely the place where we would like to bring out A game. There is a lot of room for improvement. Not just on the field, but batting wise as well.”

Brief scores: West Indies 164 (Dottin 60, Ferling 3-27, Schutt 3-50) beat Australia 156 (Blackwell 45, Daley 3-22, Taylor 2-26) by eight runs.

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Category: Sports, WICB

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