Wins for Australia, England, India and New Zealand in the final group games in the Women's World Cup saw those four sides confirm their places in the Super Six stage of the tournament, where they will be joined by outsiders Pakistan and the West Indies.
Australia 211-7 (Blackwell 46no, Selman 2-28) beat West Indies 164-7 (Dottin 51) by 47 runs | Report
England 82-2 (Edwards 32no) beat Pakistan 78 (Marsh 5-15, Edwards 2-2) by eight wickets | Report
India 137-7 (Raj 75no) beat Sri Lanka 102 (Silva 21, Sharma 3-19) by 35 runs | Report
New Zealand 250-5 (McGlashan 88no) beat South Africa 51 (Mason 4-2, Bates 4-7) by 199 runs | Report
|India's Mithali Raj sweeps during her innings against Sri Lanka © ICC|
The West Indies put up another spirited performance, pushing Australia hard before they fell short by 47 runs against the reigning champions. Australia reached 211 for seven with Alex Blackwell, Shelley Nitschke, Jodie Fields and Ellyse Perry all making starts but failing to go on as Shekera Selman and Stefanie Taylor all picked up two wickets.
“We lost consecutive wickets throughout our innings, especially early on, and that really hurt us in the middle overs, but I think we regrouped well to get a defendable total on the board,” vice captain Blackwell said.
Taylor led the West Indies' run chase with 32 from the top of the order but the experience of the Australian bowling attack kept them under pressure throughout, and they lost too many wickets to challenge, despite 51 from Deandra Dottin. Her innings included four sixes as the West Indies, thanks to New Zealand also winning their match, still made it through to the second stage of the competition. Perry, Erin Osbourne and Lisa Sthalekar picked up two wickets apiece for Australia.
Mithali Raj scored her second half-century in a row and this time it guided India to a 35-run win over Sri Lanka as they booked their place in the second stage. She scored 75 not out and was given much-needed support by captain Jhulen Goswami as the pair combined to take India from 78 for seven to their closing score of 137 for seven, Goswami contributing an unbeaten 24. Chamarai Kumarihami, Udeshika Prabodhani and Suwini de Alwis all picked up two wickets for Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka were then bowled out for 102 to end a miserable group stage for them - they now have a seventh/eighth place play-off against South Africa to complete their tournament and their batting will need to improve as they were all out for 102 with Dedunu Silva top scoring with 21. Amita Sharma picked up three for 19 but with the winning margin just 35 runs, India's unbroken eighth-wicket stand proved the difference between the two sides.
England made it three wins out of three by beating Pakistan by eight wickets, enjoying the luxury of being able to field some of the players who hadn't yet made a start. Laura Marsh was the star of the show, her off-spin accounting for five batters for the cost of just 15 runs, fourth equal on England's all-time best bowling analysis list. Kartherine Brunt picked up two for 25 and Holly Colvin one for eight before captain Charlotte Edwards ended the innings with two for two.
Sarah Taylor (11) was then dismissed caught at midwicket for the second time in two innings and Ebony Rainford-Brent (18) was also dismissed, but the result was never in doubt, Edwards completing the job by hitting an unbeaten 32 to take England home in the 33rd over.
“I was really pleased with my performance today," Marsh said. "It went really well. I was pleased to take some wickets and I'm delighted with the record. The pitch was not really turning much so I had to concentrate on my line and length.
“The team are doing really well and getting better and better. Hopefully we can continue improving against New Zealand, but they are a good side and so we won’t underestimate them.”
That match-up between England and New Zealand is the one to look out for in the Super Sixes after the White Ferns completed a 199-run rout of South Africa to head into the second week of the competition with an unblemished record. One day after her brother, Peter, had scored an unbeaten half-century for New Zealand against India, Sara emulated him by hitting an unbeaten 88, a career-best effort to propel her side to 250 for five. She added 139 with Nicola Browne, who finished on 51 not out as South Africa were taken apart.
Amy Satterthwaite also managed 73 as New Zealand recovered from a shaky start - Charlize van der Westhuizen removed Kate Pulford (1) and Suzie Bates (0) as she bagged two for 18 in a superb spell. Her fellow bowlers were unable to follow her example, and nor for that matter, were the batters, as they were rolled for just 51.
Crizelda Brits hit 25, the only double figure score in the innings as Bates made up for her duck earlier in the day by returning four for two. Aimee Mason also took four for seven.
© Cricket World 2009