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Australian Women got off to a terrific start in ICC Women's World T20 as they smashed Pakistan by an impressive margin of 52-runs at Guyana. They'll be up against Ireland Women who will be playing their first match of the tournament. The match will be played at Providence Stadium, Guyana on Sunday 11th November. Considering the fact that Ireland are newcomers at the World T20 stage, it isn't surprising that they haven't won a match at the World T20 competition yet. Therefore, they do not start as favorites, but can certainly topple the best in the business on their day.
It was all about Alyssa Healy in the first T20I as she first stole the show with the bat and then did exceedingly well behind the stumps. Opening the innings, she scored 48 off just 29 deliveries. She single-handedly got Australia off to a flying start as she raced to 31 off just 16 deliveries. In addition to her batting, she was involved in five Pakistani dismissals which completely derailed Pakistan's chase.
While no one from Australian Women could go on and score big, everyone contributed with the bat to take them to a more than respectable total of 165. Beth Mooney and Meg Lanning played settled knocks of 48 and 41 each. The three batswomen who scored in this match form the backbone of Australian batting lineup and will play a vital role in Australia's World Cup campaign.
With Pakistan needed to pull off their highest ever T20I run-chase, odds were in favor of Australia after the conclusion of the first innings. Megan Schutt's miserly spell upfront sealed it further. She gave away a total of five runs in her first two overs and picked up the wicket of Ayesha Zafar in the process. She picked up her second wicket in the death overs and eventually finished with the impressive figures of 2 for 13 in her four overs. Overall, Australian Women exhibited a complete performance and it will be difficult to beat them for any team in the competition if they manage to put up a similar team effort.
Beth Mooney, Alyssa Healy, Ashleigh Gardner, Meg Lanning, Elyse Villani, Rachael Haynes, Ellyse Perry, Sophie Molineux, Delissa Kimmince, Georgia Wareham, Megan Schutt.
Despite ranked 10th in ICC Women's T20 rankings, the Irish women are not in no way short of International experience. Their squad combined has over 1000 International caps to their name cannot be taken lightly in this shortest version of the game.
Captained by Laura Delany, the Irish squad has more than a couple of players who played in Women's Big Bash League and will be well aware of Australian strength and weaknesses. Kim Garth played alongside Alyssa Healy, Ellyse Perry, and Ashleigh Gardner and is well-versed in bowling to even the best in the business. Her experience with the ball will come in handy for Ireland and it will be interesting to see if she's able to present any trouble for Australian stalwarts.
Having never won a match in a World T20 before, Ireland do not start as title favorites at all. However, they'll surely have an eye to upset at least one team in the group stage to garner their first World T20 win ever. They have three players with ample experience in Big Bash League which should come in handy and are certainly more than capable to topple any team on their day.
Clare Shillington, Cecelia Joyce, Gaby Lewis, Laura Delany, Isobel Joyce, Eimear Richardson, Kim Garth, Shauna Kavanagh, Mary Waldron, Lucy OReilly, Ciara Metcalfe.
On paper, this match is clearly a mismatch. However, cricket is a game of uncertainty and T20 is even more so. Ireland defeated South Africa back in 2016 and they cannot be taken lightly. Australia, however, have been in terrific form leading up to this marquee event and have plenty of match-winners at their disposal. They are a better team in all facets of the game and should get past Ireland easily in the upcoming match.