WWT20: Windies power into semis after ending Sri Lanka’s campaign


West Indies ended Sri Lanka’s World T20 campaign with a comprehensive win, bowling out Sri Lanka for 104 inside 18 overs to achieve a comfortable 83-run win, in what can only be described as total carnage at Darren Sammy National Cricket Stadium in St Lucia.

Batting first, West Indies posted their highest T20 International total, 187-5, which was also the third highest in the Women’s T20 International. The West Indies batters finally clicked in this tournament, as the top three batters scored 152 runs out of 187.

Magnificent Hayley Matthews was the star of the show, hitting a superb 62 and returning with the ball to pick up 3-16. Deandra Dottin hit 49 and Stafanie Taylor added the sprinkle to the ice-cream with 41.

West Indies captain, Taylor, had the first sign of winning when she won the coin toss and opted to bat first. The batters were given an opportunity to make things right, and they cashed in; Dottin and Matthews getting off to a flyer towards breaking records.
After the power-play (six overs mandatory) West Indies had scored 72; their most runs in power-plays without losing a wicket.

The twenty-year-old Matthews batted with finesse, stroking eight boundaries and two maximums. She reached her astonishing fourth T20 International half-century in 25 balls, but was out caught by Perera in fearless style, losing her wicket in the tenth over with the score on 94.

The dangerous Deandra Dottin then took up the mantle to score the runs after playing the supporting role in the opening partnership, but was trapped in front as she missed out on a well-deserved half-century, falling for 49, which included eight timely boundaries.

Taylor continued her brilliant tournament by building an innings that she timed to perfection, scoring four expressive boundaries and two huge sixes in her masterful innings. Taylor arguably hit the shot of the match when she gave herself room and timed a six over the extra-cover region.

She continued her six-hitting, but that led to her demise when she tried to hit Siriwardene in the final over and was caught.

Britney Cooper then came in and finished off the carnage when she hit the final ball of the West Indies innings for a six.

Prabodhani, Ranasinghe and Siriwardene picked up one wicket each in an ordinary display of bowling.

Sri Lanka batters faced an uphill task when the required run rate was more than nine runs per over. The ever-dependable captain Chamari Athapaththu and Hasini Perera were the Sri Lankan openers who were tasked with providing a quick-fire start in the power-play overs.
However, the crowd was behind the West Indies, and Sri Lanka felt as if they were playing the entire Caribbean nation.

Shakera Selman, who bowls like a steaming train, picked up the first wicket in the third over with the score on 14. Selman rattled Perera’s stumps for 10 as Athapaththu watched her teammates fall in clusters. Guyanese Shemaine Campbell was involved in some brilliant ground work when 17-year-old Dilhari was run out for 5.

The defending champions continued to play as a unit, and the bowlers continued their onslaught, with Sri Lankan batters failing to answer the constant questions being ask by the Caribbean attack.

Athapaththu was the only Sri Lankan who looked comfortable combating the fiery West Indies bowling unit. She scored 44 from 35 balls. The second highest runs scored by a batter in Sri Lanka’s innings was 11, scored by Nilakshi de Silva; the Asian side was bowled out for a below-par 104.

Matthews bowled her gentle off-spin and picked up 3-16; while Selman, Dottin, Henry and Fletcher chipped in with one wicket each to register a crushing victory for the hosts. (Brandon Corlette)


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