WOMEN’S WORLD T20 2018
Cricbuzz Staff •
Healy cracked an impressive 29-ball 48 for Australia © Getty
Alyssa Healy (48) and Beth Mooney (48) composed vital hands, while the bowlers made incisions at regular intervals to propel Australia to a comfortable 52-run victory against Pakistan in Guyana to start their Women’s World T20 2018 campaign in style. In pursuit of a target of 166, Pakistan could muster just 113 for 8.
Australia, the three-time champions, opted to bat and made a good start. Healy and Mooney strung together a stand of 72 for the opening wicket in just eight overs. Healy, in particular, was in good nick, evidenced by the fact that she crunched eight boundaries and a six. Meg Lanning, the captain, who has the highest individual score (126) in T20Is, also played her part with a brisk 34-ball 41.
However, at a crucial time of the innings, Nashra Sandhu, the left-arm spinner, took the scalp of Ashleigh Gardner to engineer a collapse as Australia slide from 144 for 2 to 159 for 5.
Aliya Riaz backed Sandhu’s efforts by picking the prized scalp of Lanning, while Elyse Villani was run out for just seven. Ellyse Perry, who replaced Villani at the crease, cracked a boundary off the final ball as Australia ended up with a useful total. For Pakistan, Sandhu and Riaz shared two wickets each.
While chasing down a competitive target, the Pakistan think-tank would have hoped for a solid start, but they didn’t get one. At the end of powerplay overs, Pakistan were in a spot of bother at 33 for 3. Bismah Maroof, batting at No.4, tried to resurrect the innings with a 25-ball 26, but she had too much to do.
Sana Mir, the former captain, also played a useful hand (20), but by then, the outcome of the match was more or less a foregone conclusion. Mir, however, remained unbeaten and ensured that Pakistan would bat out their allotted 20 overs.
Megan Schutt, the medium pacer, returned impressive figures of 2 for 13 from her quota of four overs. Wareham, the leg-spinner, also snared two scalps. Australia will take on Ireland on November 11, while Pakistan are up against their arch-rivals, India, on the same day.
Brief scores: Australia 165/5 in 20 overs (Alyssa Healy 48, Beth Mooney 48; Aliya Riaz 2-25) beat Pakistan 113/8 in 20 overs (Bismah Maroof 26; Megan Schutt 2-13) by 52 runs.