Australia Beat England To Retain Women's WT20 Title

Australia Beat England To Retain Women's WT20 Title
Australia Beat England To Retain Women's WT20 Title
©REUTERS / Action Images

Australia 142-4 (Cameron 45) beat
England 138-9 (Jonassen 3-25) by 4 runs
ICC Women's World T20 2012, Final
Report by Chetan Narula in Colombo

Australia became the first team to successfully defend the ICC Women's World Twenty20 when they beat England by four runs in a tense final at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.

They have now added the 2012 ICC Women’s World T20 to their 2010 prize won in the West Indies as well as their five 50-over World Cup titles.

England won the toss and chose to field, and the Australians came out all guns blazing. Openers Meg Lanning and Alyssa Healy put up 51 runs for the first wicket, in less than seven overs, providing a great start to their team.

They hit seven fours in all and completely took the English attack by surprise, who erred in line and length early on. Both openers crossed the 20-run mark, with Lanning scoring 25 off 24 balls with four fours and Healy making 26 off 25 balls including three fours.

Lanning was out in the seventh over and in walked Jess Cameron to further solidify Australia's position. She top scored with 45 runs off 34 balls, hitting five fours and one six, seeing her team past the 100-run mark in the 15th over.

She shared a 51-run stand for the third wicket with Lisa Sthalekar, who came to bat in the eleventh over when Healy got out.

Sthalekar scored 23 runs off 26 balls, with one four, and remained unbeaten in the end, steering Australia to a handsome total of 142 for four in their allotted 20 overs. For England, Holly Colvin was the best bowler, with two for 21 in four overs.

Chasing 143, England made a good start with openers Charlotte Edwards and Laura Marsh (8) putting up 20 runs for the first wicket. When the latter was out in the fifth over, they were lagging behind in scoring rate but needed a platform to be able to make a push towards the end.

Edwards and Sarah Taylor added 24 runs for the second wicket, but then suffered a double blow in the space of three overs as both of them were dismissed. Edwards was the top scorer with 28 runs off 23 balls, with four fours and one six, and out in the eighth over.

But the bigger body blow was the dismissal of Taylor for only 19 runs off 16 balls (two fours) on a day when her team needed the number one player to play a big one.

61/3 in the tenth over soon became 90/6 in the fifteenth over, as wickets fell at a regular interval for England. Jenny Gunn, with 19 runs off 14 balls (one four and one six), took them closer to the total but after she was out in the 18th over, it Danielle Hazel (16 not out off 13 balls, one four) tried the impossible when sixteen runs were needed off the last six balls.

England could only manage eleven of those as they lost a match for only the second time this year, albeit in a World Cup final.

For Australia, Jess Jonassen was the best bowler and took three for 25, while Lisa Sthalekar (2-16) and Julie Hunter (2-36) provided able support.

© Cricket World 2012

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