Photo Credit: ICC
Ellyse Perry praised Australia’s all-round performance as they defeated the West Indies by seven wickets to maintain their perfect start to the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022.
Perry took three for 22 as the West Indies were bowled out for 131 in Wellington but was out for 10 with the bat as Australia slipped to 58 for three at the beginning of their reply.
However, Rachael Haynes was there at the end on 83 not out to guide Australia to a fourth win in four games and keep them leading the way in New Zealand.
“Obviously bowling first and taking some wickets in the powerplay and getting the momentum through that was absolutely awesome,” Perry said.
“I think it’s the kind of pitch where it is tricky to start at times and obviously, when you’re defending a low total, teams are going to come out and be particularly aggressive in the way that they bowl to you.
“I thought we steadied pretty well and obviously Rachael was absolutely pivotal in that chase, and she played brilliantly.”
Haynes is now the leading run-scorer in the competition with 277 runs, overtaking Hayley Matthews who was dismissed for a duck by Perry – the first wicket in a sparkling eight-over spell.
Perry now sits on five wickets from four games, level with teammate Ashleigh Gardner in the bowling standings after she also took a three-fer in her second game back after Covid.
But despite Australia’s dominance so far in the tournament, Perry believes her side still face a challenge to keep up their unbeaten run in the closest ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup ever.
She said: “I think World Cups are so unique in that sense. I don’t think you ever feel comfortable, you are constantly having to adapt to new conditions, new opposition and it’s really just about making sure that you preparing as best you can.
“We’re playing some pretty good cricket at the moment. It’s been really nice that the contributions across the board from the whole group have been bang on.
“But I think sport is such a fickle thing and it’s why we will love watching it but you just never know what you’re going to get on the day.
“I think looking at this competition it is by far and away the tightest World Cup that I have ever been a part of, teams are so competitive. We’ve already seen lots of upsets in different matches, so I don’t think you can take your foot off the pedal.”
For the West Indies, two narrow wins over New Zealand and England have been followed by heavy defeats to India and Australia.
However, Matthews, who took the first three catches to dismiss the big names of Alyssa Healy, Meg Lanning and Perry, believes the West Indies have their destiny in their own hands.
She said: “I don’t think it’s too much pressure. Coming into this tournament, we knew our first four games are probably going to be our four hardest.
“We said to ourselves, if we could get at least two or three wins over these first four games, we’ll be in a really strong position and we’ve done exactly that.
“Looking at the rest of the games, these are games that we should expect to win and what’s the good thing about it is that the tournament is still in our hands if we go out there and we can win all three of our games we’ll be qualifying for the semi-finals.
“We know that we have the team that once we go out there and we play our best cricket, we’ll get the wins on there. There’s no pressure, it is just a matter of going out there each and every day taking it one game at a time and just performing as best as we can.”