Kolkata: Stefanie Taylor and her teammates added an important chapter to the glorious history of West Indian cricket by claiming the women's World T20 crown at the Eden Gardens yesterday.
West Indies's Deandra Dottin celebrates after victory in the World T20 cricket tournament women's final match between Australia and West Indies at The Eden Gardens. Pic/ AFP
Up against three-time champions Australia, the Caribbean women made their maiden entry into the final a memorable one by reaching a target of 149 in the final over. An opening partnership of 120 runs in 94 deliveries between Hayley Matthews and skipper Stafanie Taylor sets things up nicely for an eight-wicket victory.
120-run vital stand
Matthews, adjudged Player of the Final, came away with a 45-ball 66 that had six boundaries and three sixes while Taylor scored 59 off 57 with the help of six fours. The West Indian skipper picked up the Player of the Tournament for her allround performances.
The Aussie total was built around the efforts of opener Elyse Villani, skipper Meg Lanning and Ellyse Perry. Villani and Lanning each scored 52, in 37 and 49 deliveries, respectively, while No 4 Perry contributed a 23-ball 28 that had two sixes.
West Indies cricketers celebrate after winning the women's World T20 final against Australia at Eden Gardens in Kolkata yesterday. Hayley Matthews (66 in 45 balls) was adjudged the Player of the Final. Pic/AFP
Chasing a challenging total, and pegged back by two tight opening overs that fetched just three runs, it was left to Matthews to dispel doubts with a defiant counterattack. Not afraid to go over the top, the 18-year-old signalled intent with a couple of boundaries and a six off Rene Farrell as the fourth over fetched 13.
The next two brought another 26 as the West Indies gathered momentum and ensured that the power-play wasn't wasted. Matthews fell in the 16th over, pulling one fiercely straight to short mid-wicket while skipper Taylor left a couple of overs later.
By then, much of the job had been done. Deandra Dottin, who had conceded only a single in the final over of the Australian innings while picking up the wicket of Perry, teamed up with Britney Cooper to lend the finishing touches, and it was all over when Schutt missed the stumps from only a few feet away and conceded overthrows. As the sea of maroon rolled in from beyond the boundary, the likes of Darren Sammy, Curtley Ambrose and Andre Russell rushed in to join the celebrations.