Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Chilly start


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MUMBAI – A fighting half-century stand between Deandra Dottin and Shemaine Campbelle failed to pull West Indies women out of a rut as they lost to Australia Women by 135 runs in a warm-up game of the ICC Women’s World Cup at Middle Income Group Ground yesterday.
Dottin and Campbelle led a fight back by compiling 67 runs for the fourth wicket in a futile chase of Australia’s 333 for five off 50 overs. The Caribbean women were bowled out for 198 in 44.3 overs.
Dottin top-scored with 52 runs before playing a Renee Chappell off break into the hands of Megan Schutt. Her 30-ball innings included four fours and five sixes.
The visitors lost their first wicket with just 24 runs on the board and plunged to 71 for four as most of their frontline batters were dismissed cheaply by the 17th over.
Opener June Ogle Thomas was first to depart, bowled by medium pacer Ellyse Perry for nine after hitting her for successive boundaries in the first over.
Dottin and Campbelle lifted the West Indies from their shaky 71 for four to a promising position of 133 for four before Campbelle was caught by wicketkeeper Jodie Fields off Folly Ferling, having contributed 18.
Captain Merissa Aguilleira and Shakera Selman staged spirited late order attempts to maintain the momentum but struggled against the rampaging Aussies.
Aguilleira cracked three fours in a knock of 32 before she was caught going after Schutt while Selman was unbeaten on 29.
Earlier, four top order batters powered to half-centuries as the Australians compiled their mammoth total.
Jess Cameron top-scored with 62 before she was stumped by captain and wicketkeeper Aguilleira, while Campbelle had Rachael Haynes caught by Selman on 61.
Lisa Sthalekar, 59, and Elyse Villani, 50 were both forced to retire hurt.
Speaking before the warm-up match, Aguilleira conceded that West Indies women would be campaigning in a tough group but said her charges were not worried.
They have been drawn in Group “A” with England, India and Sri Lanka, while Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan and South Africa comprise Group “B”.
The Windies women have been improving since the last ICC Women’s World Cup in 2009, where they finished fifth.
“England are the champs so we know they will come to win again,” said Aguilleira.
“We had a few matches against them (back in 2010 at home) and we beat them, but it will be different conditions in India. They will present a stern test for any team in the tournament.”
The West Indies qualified for the 2013 event after winning the ICC Women’s World Cup Qualifier in Bangladesh in 2011.
The Caribbean side have yet to win an ICC global event, but have been reaching semi-final stages of competitions.
“The Sri Lankans have been progressing and we always keep a close eye on them. We can’t under-rate them,” said Aguilleira.
“India have the home advantage and that will count for something in this tournament. They have good all-round strength and will be a force to be reckoned with.”
The Windies enter the tournament full of confidence after rebounding from 0-2 to tie the ODI Series 2-2 against South Africa, with one match being rained off.
They then easily won both matches to take the two-match T20 rubber earlier this month as well.
“It is all about adjusting from the T20 format where we played in Sri Lanka to the 50-over format where we will be playing in India,” said the 27-year-old who currently has 52 ODI and has scored 818 runs and 55 dismissals.
“We have had the series against South Africa which has put us in the right frame of mind for India.”
Aguilleira led her side to the semi-final of the ICC Women’s World T20 in Sri Lanka last year before losing to Australia.
“We didn’t go all the way in Sri Lanka, but I’m sure we showed the world how good we are at the international level.”
West Indies women will have a second warm-up match today against a Local X1. (CMC)


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