Sun | Dec 4, 2022

Coach Walsh, players happy after gaining final four spot

Published:Monday | March 28, 2022 | 12:09 AMLennox Aldred/Gleaner Writer

Courtney Walsh
Courtney Walsh
Hayley Matthews (right) of the West Indies celebrates after taking the wicket of Deepti Sharma of India during the 2022 ICC Women's Cricket World Cup match between West Indies and India at Seddon Park on March 12, 2022 in Hamilton, New Zealand.
Hayley Matthews (right) of the West Indies celebrates after taking the wicket of Deepti Sharma of India during the 2022 ICC Women's Cricket World Cup match between West Indies and India at Seddon Park on March 12, 2022 in Hamilton, New Zealand.
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The three days that the West Indies Women had to wait to find out if they were in the semi-finals of the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup seemed like an eternity according to the players, however, the regional side had lady luck on their side, and they will get a chance to play for a spot in the grand final starting tomorrow at 5 p.m. Jamaica time.

The West Indies will face Australia in semi-final one after the regional side finished fourth in the tournament on seven points. India were eliminated by South Africa in the final match yesterday. South Africa had already qualified for the semi-finals, but a win for India would have knocked out the West Indies Women.

South Africa will face third-place England in the other semi-final.

For head coach Courtney Walsh, a final-four berth was just reward for the West Indies Women, who finished the group stage of the tournament with three wins, three losses, and a point from an abandoned game in seven matches.

VERY GOOD CRICKET

“I feel happy and proud for the girls as we played some very good cricket. We deserved to be in the semi-finals. I know it was a long wait, but the excitement is well worth it, and we will give it our best shot.”

That wait was almost unbearable for leading all-rounder Hayley Matthews, who described the experience as “nerve-racking”. The Barbadian was, however, glad that the results went the Windies’ way and that the team could finally focus on trying to get past the unbeaten Australians.

“We know the quality team Australia has, but at the same time, I don’t feel there is any pressure on us to play against the best team in the world. We just have to go and play our natural game and have fun because we perform best when we have fun,” said Matthews.

Captain Stafanie Taylor had a more sedate celebration when the team qualified for the semi-finals, however, she is well aware that to get to the final, the team will have to play a perfect game to try and defeat the Australians for the first time in three attempts at the global showpiece.

“We played Australia in the group stage and a practice game, so we have to look at that footage and go back to the drawing board and see where we went wrong. We bowled well against them, but our batting fell, and we have to step up our game in the semis.”