Cricket | Women’s T20 World Cup final preview
It’s going to be Australia taking on India in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup final after the host nation emerged victorious following a nail-biter of a semi-final against South Africa.
Can the Aussies do it again?
The Aussies will be looking to defend the title they claimed in 2018 and are still regarded as the best short format side in the world. That semi-final saw them establish a five-run win in Sydney where it was a day of unpredictable weather – with those conditions forcing the cancellation of the first semi-final between India and England, with the latter crashing out of the tournament on account of having finished lower in the table.
However, the bad weather relented in time for a captain’s knock from Meg Lanning, guiding them to 134/5. Just at the end of the Aussie innings, though, the rain made a return and the covers had to be brought out. But eventually the players were able to come back out with nine minutes remaining, where Australia dominated to see the match out.
They head into the climax of the tournament as the 13/25 odds-on favourites to take the title again.
The year of the underdog?
Fellow finalists India got the better of Australia in the tournament’s opening match and have greatly impressed throughout the couple of weeks. They went on to beat Bangladesh by 18 runs, New Zealand by three runs and then recorded a seven-wicket win against Sri Lanka.
Guided by Harmanpreety Kaur, India will be preparing to battle it out with the four-time champions at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, with an incredible estimated attendance of over 70,000 spectators.
The men’s team have not done so well in the knockout stages since 2014 and now the women have a great chance to end the unlucky run.
In terms of standout individual performances and ones to watch, India have often looked to leg spinner Poonam Yadav who, at 28-years-old, is one of the more experienced players. She has nine wickets at an economy rate of 5.56. She will be instrumental in her nation’s attempt to win the ICC Women’s World T20 for the very first time. Another player who deserves a mention is their 16-year-old wonder kid Shafali Verma, who is currently the number one T20 player in the world.
You can get the underdogs to cause an upset at 6/4.
As for the host side, there have been two batsmen who have shone in particular. Alyssa Healy and Beth Mooney have chalked up 341 runs between the pair of them and will be pivotal here once again.
Unlike semi-finals day, the weather forecast is looking much better and, whatever the outcome, it has been a thrilling tournament with two very deserving outfits making it all the way to the end.
Check out all our cricket odds here.