In a roller-coaster show of the Australian chase, the 33-ball 57 by Tahlia McGrath pushed Aussies to one more win in the ICC T20 World Cup 2023, registering a convincing victory against South Africa by 6 wickets with 21 balls remaining at the store. For her blistering and blustering echo on the ground during the chase, McGrath won the Player of the Match award.
Australia won the toss and elected to bowl first. Annabel Sutherland was replaced in place of injured Alyssa Healy. Laura Wolvaardt and Tazmin Brits came in to kick off the innings. Wolvaardt was off the mark on the third ball that too with a fantastic four towards the deep third.
Having scored just 1 and 2 in the second and third over respectively, Brits took the responsibility to show some movement with an edged boundary in the fourth over followed by Wolvaardt’s in the next over. After a quite slow start in the first three over, South Africa concluded the powerplay with two boundaries by Brits, double and three singles at 41 for no loss.
The ninth over witnessed the fifty-run stand by both the opening duos but Wolvaardt left out in the middle after getting dismissed in the same over as Ellyse Perry got the breakthrough. To shrug off the loss, Brits continued to show her skills with the bat that too in the very next over with a boundary and the inning’s first six, consecutively.
Next in the queue to depart was Marizanne Kapp for a meagre duck. And it seemed the dugout is just curious to give a round of the wickets as Brits had to retire after a breath-taking knock of 45 off 36 balls, followed by Chloe Tryon at just 1. And after much ado for continuous series of strike rotations by Sune Luus and Delmi Tucker, the latter had to depart at just 7 off 13 balls.
Nadine de Klerk was lucky enough to hit the second maximum of the innings in the nineteenth over after being lucky enough to get mis-stumped by Beth Mooney in the previous over. Luus, although tried hard to get some more runs on the board could only end with a four on the third ball of the last over before getting succumbed by Ash Gardner. The total remained at 124 for 6.
Ellyse Perry and Beth Mooney walked down the ground to chase down the easy-looking total for the Australian line-up. The first over could just bring one but Mooney opened up arms to take Shabnim Ismail down the track for the first boundary of the chase. Perry too contributed well with her bat bringing her first boundary in the third over and her second in the following.
Just as the start looked poised, Kapp brought the breakthrough for her team, toppling Perry down at 11 off 8 balls. Meg Lanning, at number 3 couldn’t help much in the chase as she had to depart for a mere single-digit 1 off 4 balls. Gardner, keeping the runs in mind and the balance to keep the chase going came up with a boundary on the last ball of the powerplay to sum it up at 33 for 2.
Mooney, although looked great with her bat but could not last longer than the last ball of the seventh over as she met her LBW at a well-driven 20 off 25 balls. For the next two overs, the chase remained low as only a few singles were added to the board until Tahlia McGrath opened up their arms to resume the actual chase.
McGrath looked superb with her maestro to hit continuous boundaries along with keeping up a valuable partnership in the middle with Gardner that brought incessant running between the wickets. The third ball of the fourteenth over and the 50-run partnership was on the stage that came with McGrath’s splendid extra cover four.
It looked as if McGrath is on a roller-coaster ride to get things done earlier than needed and a hat-trick of boundaries in the sixteenth over not only advanced the Aussies towards the win but also brought the half-century for McGrath. Things were almost done by the ball that dismissed her at 57 in the seventeenth over, where Harry stood up with the winning runs as a majestic boundary to contemplate the former.
ICC T20 World Cup 2023: South Africa vs Australia, Match 15 Brief Score
South Africa 124/6 in 20 overs (Tazmin Brits 45; Georgia Wareham 2-18) lost to Australia 125/4 in 16.3 overs (Tahlia McGrath 57; Marizanne Kapp 2-21) by six wickets.