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Australia stroll to back-to-back victories in T20 World Cup

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Australia strolled to back-to-back victories at the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup as a potent opening partnership between Alyssa Healy and Beth Mooney helped beat Bangladesh by 86 runs.

  • Alyssa Healy and Beth Mooney put on 151 for the first wicket, Australia’s highest partnership for any wicket at the Women’s T20 World Cup
  • Australia’s 189 for one, the highest total of the tournament, proved too much for Bangladesh who mustered 103 for nine from their 20 overs
  • Australia climbed to second in Group A behind India, while Bangladesh sit bottom
  • Healy’s return to form continued as she made a carefree 83 to hit the top of the tournament’s run-scoring charts, ably supported by Mooney who ended unbeaten on 81.

Sri Lanka gave them a fright three days earlier but there were no such scares for the hosts as Bangladesh only managed 103 for nine in reply and Meg Lanning’s side climbed to second in Group A.

Healy began with bristling intent, peeling three boundaries from Jahanara Alam’s opening over as Bangladesh’s seven-strong off-side field failed to foil the opener.

Salma Khatun opted to take pace off the ball with five overs of spin in the Powerplay but Healy rocked back and cleared long-on to take the score to 53 without loss from the first six overs.

The keeper-batter made it look easy as she struck sixes over long-off and then midwicket from Khadiza Tul Kubra, bringing up a brutal 26-ball fifty.

Mooney turned over the strike before showing her own strength down the ground with three boundaries in as many overs, helping bring up the first T20I century partnership for the openers.

Their first reprieve came when Rumana Ahmed beat Mooney’s bat and Nigar Sultana Joty was ponderous in whipping off the bails, saving the batter’s skin.

Mooney reverse swept for four to take the stand to 122, Australia’s highest partnership for the first wicket in T20Is.

The breakthrough finally came when Healy sliced to point off Salma, departing for 83 from 53 balls.

Ashleigh Gardner had licence to swing and did just that in the penultimate over, carting Salma for three boundaries in her 22 from nine balls.

The final two overs went for 30 runs and Australia rose to 189 for one from their 20 overs, their second-highest total at the Women’s T20 World Cup.

Bangladesh’s reply began with Murshida Khatun (8) lofting Megan Schutt down the ground at the start of the fourth over but departed two balls later as Jess Jonassen took a fine catch pedalling back at mid-on.

Sanjida Islam toe-ended to the third man boundary from her first ball and was comprehensively bowled by Schutt on her second as an eventful over ended with the score 23 for two.

Annabel Sutherland’s first T20 World Cup spell yielded a maiden wicket as Sanjida was strangled down the leg side for three, with the score on 26 for three.

The youngster was punished for straying down leg soon after by Fargana Hoque Pinky, who built a handy partnership for the fourth wicket with keeper-batter Nigar Sultana.

Nigar stroked Nicola Carey through the covers for four when Lanning turned to spin, and Sutherland leaked more runs as Fargana stroked two boundaries from an over that cost 13.

Nigar and Fargana, who struck Carey for a handsome off-drive, assembled Bangladesh’s second fifty partnership at the T20 World Cup, and it ended on exactly 50 when Nigar skied one to Lanning off Carey on 19.

Rumana made a sprightly 13 from 12 balls but picked out Wareham on the midwicket fence to make it 95 for five and Schutt had her third when Fargana’s top-edge was gleefully caught by Healy.

Three wickets in three balls rounded it off – Jonassen clean bowling Jahanara before Salma and Khadija were run out in successive balls.

Scores in brief

Australia beat Bangladesh by 86 runs, Manuka Oval, Canberra

Australia 189-1, 20 overs (Alyssa Healy 83, Beth Mooney 81 not out; Salma Khatun 1-39)
Bangladesh 103-9, 20 overs (Fargana Hoque Pinky 36; Megan Schutt 3-21, Jess Jonassen 2-17)

Courtesy of the ICC

Comments from our correspondent Julian Thompson:

* As seen on SKY TV and heard on Radio 5 Live, Australia (188/1, 20 overs) beat Bangladesh (103/9), to win by 86 runs

Alyssa Healy 83; Beth Mooney 81*; Salma Khatun 1/39 ; Fargana Hoque 36; Megan Schutt 3/21; Jess Jonassen 2/17.

* SKY commentators mentioned it was the first time Australia had played Bangladesh in any cricketing format. Also that
Australia’s left-and-right-handed openers would grind down made their opponents, if field changes came with every ball

* Alyssa Healy’s fifty came from 26 balls, including two straight ‘sixes’ off the bowling of Khadija Tul Kubra

* By the Hundred ball benchmark (16.4 overs) Australia had scored a match-winning 157-1

* On 47, Beth Mooney survived stumping by keeper Sultana Joti. Australia finished with a mammoth score of 188

*Set 189 to win, Bangladesh lost both openers Shamima Sultan (13) and Murshida Khatun (8) to Megan Schutt’s (3/21) pace

* top scorer Fargana Hoque (36) was caught behind by keeper Alyssa Healy (also of Schutt) – after which point only three runs were added

* With the score on 102 during the final over, Bangladesh lost three wickets including Salma Khan and Khadija Tul Kubra: who were both ‘run out’

* SKY commentators noticed that Ellyse Perry had bowled three overs, but didn’t bowl a fourth as she’d suffered from a shoulder injury