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Windies eye a ‘maiden’

Calcutta/Mumbai: Five-time champion Australia will face West Indies in the final of the Women’s World Cup at the Cricket Club of India’s Brabourne Stadium on Sunday. This will be the tenth final of the women’s showcase event, which began in 1973, and the third final of the women’s event to be held in India.

Both teams have had contrasting paths to the final, Australia, the most successful team to date in Women’s World Cup history, won all but one of their matches on the way to the final with the side losing just to their fellow finalist, West Indies, in their last Super Six game.

Meanwhile, the women from the Caribbean managed one win in the group stage, to secure their Super Six position, before winning all three vital Super Six matches.

West Indies’ win over Australia in their last Super Six game ousted defending champion England, and New Zealand, out of championship contention and, for the first time since 2009, there will be a new team at the top of the ICC Women’s ODI Team Rankings after England’s slip to third post-tournament.

Australia’s women have all contributed to the side’s journey to the final; they have been well served particularly by pacer Megan Schutt, who is currently the joint highest wicket-taker of the tournament along with Anya Shrubsole, with 13 wickets.

She has had great support from her new-ball partner Holly Ferling, the youngster who made her debut for the Southern Stars in this event.

Veteran Australia spinner, Lisa Sthalekar, with Erin Osborne have made sure the bowling has been tight in the middle over for Jodie Fields’ side.