Women’s cricket: Laura and Tazmin tame the Aussies

Henry

It was a sad Sunday for Australian cricket, one they will keep quiet about around the barbecue fires.

After the men’s team in Brisbane lost a test match against the West Indies for the first time since 1997, the South African women’s cricket team also rewrote the record books when they beat the Aussies’ women’s team for the first time.

After Australia were restricted to 142/6 runs in the second T20 match in their innings at the Manuka Oval in Canberra, South Africa overcame the winning target (144/4) in 19 overs to win by six wickets.

The big batting heroes were the captain, Laura Wolvaardt, with 58 unbeaten runs (53 balls, 6×4) and her opening partner Tazmin Brits with 41 (28 balls, 8x) who laid the foundation with a partnership of 75 runs in 9.4 overs.

Marizanne Kapp (20) and Anneke Bosch (11) admittedly did not score many runs, but gave Wolvaardt the necessary support to defeat the Aussies.

It was the 24th time the two countries had clashed (in ODI and T20 cricket). The closest South Africa came to victory was in 2016 when the matchup ended in a draw.

Sunday’s victory means that the series of three is balanced on a knife edge after the Aussies won Saturday’s first matchup.

“It’s very special, especially because we haven’t been able to do it before, and that on their home ground.

“Especially because quite a few of our senior players have retired in the last few years… to have this dynamic young team that was able to beat the world champions is very special and it will hopefully be a big move.

“Hopefully their hold has now been broken so that we can now win on a regular basis,” Wolvaardt said after the match.

Kapp added that she was surprised with how the Aussies approached their batting.

“But I am delighted. We are one of those teams that once came close to it, but couldn’t pull it off. There are quite a few of us who have been playing for years and it is high time that we win the close matches,” said Kapp.

In the Aussies’ innings, the captain, Alyssa Healy, with 29 and Grace Harris with 31* were the only batsmen who could resist.

The Proteas’ opening bowler, Masabata Klaas (2/16 in 3 innings), pinned the home team.

But the screws were tightened in the middle innings when the two spin bowlers, Nonkululeko Mlaba and Chloe Tryon, strangled the home side’s batsmen.

Australia could only score one four between the 13th and 18th innings.

Some of the Aussies’ star batsmen such as Tahlia McGrath (23 from 28 deliveries) and Elysse Perry (18 from 19 balls) were kept in check.

The third and final match in the T20 series takes place in Hobart on Tuesday and is followed by three ODIs and a historic one-off Test in Perth.

Source: cricinfo.com