England successfully defends 99 to defeat Australia and go to the Women’sUnder-19 T20 World Cup final. England mounted an incredible recovery to knock Australia out of the first Women’s Under-19 T20 World Cup, winning a low-scoring semi-final thriller by three runs. After being down to 7-45, Alexa Stonehouse and Josie Groves fought back to help England to 99 all out in 19.5 overs. Australia was 8-77 in reply, due primarily to Hannah Barker’s 3-10, until the tail rallied to leave them needing only four runs from 16 deliveries.
Under-19 T20 World Cup thrillers
However, a direct hit run out left Australia 9-96, and England captain Grace Scrivens was the hero, trapping Maggie Clarke lbw to capture the last wicket and earn a position in Sunday’s final versus India. Despite battling innings from Claire Moore (20) and Amy Smith, England had taken two early wickets to leave Australia 2-4 and proceeded to tighten the pressure (26). Australia’s form batter of the tournament, Kate Pelle, began well with a lofted boundary down the ground but was out two balls later, and the Aussies didn’t add to their account until Sianna Ginger (0) spooned a return catch to Stonehouse, leaving them 2-4.
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Ella Haywood tried to settle alongside Moore but was bowled for 16 by Baker, before Scrivens grabbed the crucial wicket of Moore, who was bowled first ball after the drinks break, leaving Australia 4-48. The wickets kept falling as England reinforced their authority until a last-ditch effort from Ella Wilson (8no) and Milly Illingworth (8) brought Australia within four runs of victory. Due to the strain, Australia gambled on a tight single that saw Illingworth run out before Scrivens hit Clark plumb lbw to earn England’s spot in the final.
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Earlier, Illingworth (1-25) took the vital wicket of the hard-hitting Liberty Heap for one, before Clark (3-15) came in and caught Niamh Holland (1) behind. Hayward (3-25) got a lucky break when Seren Smale was called out lbw for 10, with replays indicating the ball touched the glove first, but there was no doubt when she struck again in the same over, bowled Ryana Macdonald-Gay for a duck. Ginger (3-13) came into the attack and removed Charis Pavley (4) before taking out in-form England captain Scrivens, who was trapped in the deep for 20.
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After 10 overs, England was suffering at 7-45 after Hayward trapped Sophia Smales lbw. But Stonehouse and Groves’ 46-run partnership put the pressure back on the Australian bowlers and contributed crucial runs before Clark’s return in the 18th over broke their stand, dismissing Groves for 15 off 20. In the 19th, Stonehouse (25 off 33 balls) holed out to Ginger before Clark completed the English innings on the last ball of the innings. India had previously earned their spot in Sunday’s final with an eight-wicket victory against New Zealand.
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ICC Women’s Under-19 T20 World Cup 2023
Australia squad: Rhys McKenna (c),Charis Bekker, Paris Bowdler, Maggie Clark, Sianna Ginger, Lucy Hamilton, Paris Hall, Ella Hayward, Milly Illingworth, Eleanor Larosa, Claire Moore, Kate Pelle, Ananaya Sharma, Amy Smith, Ella Wilson.
View the full schedule and standings here
- January 14: Bangladesh beat Australia by seven wickets
- January 16: Australia beat USA by nine wickets
- January 18: Australia beat Sri Lanka by 108 runs
Super Six stage Under-19 T20 World Cup
- January 21: Australia beat India by seven wickets
- January 23:Australia beat UAE by six wickets
- Semi-final: England beat Australia by three runs
Final: January 29, India v England, JB Marks Oval, Potchefstroom, 1.45pm local (10.45pm AEDT)
Also Read: ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023, All-female match officials