Kolkata: With their colts having clinched the Under-19 World Cup in February this year, and the men's and women's team booking berths in the World T20 finals, the West Indies are on the threshold of an unique treble.
West Indies women’s team captain Stafanie Taylor (left) and Australia captain Meg Lanning pose with the World T20 trophy at Eden Gardens on Saturday. Pic/AFP
It'll be up to Stafanie Taylor and her team to ensure that the dream doesn't die young today.
Up against Australia, who are defending champions having won the title thrice on the trot, the Caribbean team will look to make their maiden entry into the final count.
The double-header at the Eden Gardens begins under the summer sun with an intriguing battle between a traditional
powerhouse of women's cricket and an emerging force, hours before the men's final.
'Australia under pressure'"I think it's the Australians, who will be under pressure," said Stafanie, brushing aside suggestions that the occasion may get to her inexperienced side.
"The Aussies are looking for their fourth consecutive title, and we are in our first final. We have nothing to lose," reminded the 24-year-old skipper, shortly after her counterpart spoke of the threat posed by them.
"The West Indies have a number of players, who can take the game away.
"We saw (Britney) Cooper (61 off 48) playing a big role in the semi-final (against New Zealand)," said Meg Lanning.
"We've certainly done the homework on the big players," she added, not about to concede the psychological edge.
The Aussies have played last four finals, and Meg is playing her third.
Australia had outclassed West Indies in a warm-up game in Chennai, but the Caribbean women have journeyed well since that defeat.
They bounced back after a last-ball loss to England by stopping India three short of a modest total in Mohali. "I think the England match was a turning point," said Stafanie, who has been at the top of her game with both bat and ball.
Australia, too, suffered a jolt at the hands of their trans-Tasman rivals New Zealand. "We're a very competitive side and we want to win everything," Meg said.
"West Indies are playing good cricket as are we. They will look to come out firing and we are ready for the challenge. We are going to make sure we will do everything right from the start."
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