SYDNEY, Australia, CMC – West Indies qualified for the Super Six stage of the ICC Women’s World Cup despite a 47-run loss to Australia at Drummoyne Oval yesterday.
Set 212 to win, the Caribbean side gave the defending champions a scare before finally succumbing, finishing on 164 for seven thanks to a cameo half-century from middle order batsman Deandra Dottin.
The 17-year old, right-hander stroked a superb 51 from 55 balls, cracking four sixes and a four, to rally the lower order after West Indies slipped to 85 for five in the 29th over.
She shared a 56-run stand for the sixth wicket with Debbie-Ann Lewis who scored 19, as West Indies made a concerted effort to reach their target.
But when both batters fell within four overs of each other to leave the score at 157 for seven after 46 overs, the West Indies challenge subsided allowing Australia to secure their second win of the tournament and finish second in Group A behind winners New Zealand.
West Indies, by virtue of their win against South Africa in their opening game on Sunday, reached the second stage after finishing third in Group A.
Tomorrow (tonight, Eastern Caribbean time), they will meet Pakistan who finished third in Group B behind eventual winners England and second placed India.
West Indies had started their run chase brightly, with Stafanie Taylor striking 32 from 54 balls with seven fours in an opening stand of 27 with captain Merissa Aguilleira (5).
But when Aguilleira fell in the ninth over, it triggered a slide in which four wickets fell for 30 runs off 62 balls, as off-spinners Erin Osborne (2-22) and Lisa Sthalekar (2-32) wrecked the top order.
Cordel Jack (16) added 28 for the fifth wicket with Dottin before falling, leaving Lewis and Dottin to pull the inning back together with their defiant partnership.
Earlier, West Indies were off to a superb start after winning the toss and sending the hosts in to bat, in their final Group stage game.
Right-arm pacer Shakera Selman (2-28) prised out opener Leah Poulton with the final ball of the opening over, bowling the experienced right-hander without scoring with the total on one.
Australia were then propelled by a succession of key partnerships that gave the innings momentum, though West Indies bowled tidily and snared wickets at crucial points.
Opener Shelley Nitschke, who scored 45 from 61 balls with five fours and a six, posted 41 for the second wicket with Sthalekar (15), to help the hosts recover from their early loss.
When they slipped to 78 for three in the 22nd over, Jodie Fields hit 45 in a 45-run, fourth wicket stand with Lauren Ebsary (15) to put Australia back on course.
Ebsary and Fields perished in successive overs in the space of six balls and when captain Karen Rolton was caught and bowled by off-spinner Anisa Mohammed (2-45), Australia had plunged to 130 for six in the 37th over.
But Alex Blackwell stroked a well-crafted 46 from 55 balls while Ellyse Perry, who earlier claimed two for 28, hammered a cavalier 35-ball 36 with five fours, in an enterprising 57-run, seventh wicket stand which gave impetus to the lower order.
Off-spinner Taylor sustained her excellent form, claiming two for 35 to finish the Group stage with eight wickets from three matches.