Photo Credit: ICC
It has been a challenging start to the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023 for New Zealand, with consecutive defeats, but their leading wicket taker Lea Tahuhu has backed the side’s batters to turn things around.
Tahuhu has starred in a bowling attack which has caused both South Africa and Australia problems in the opening two matches, picking up five wickets.
But the issues have been with the batting, where New Zealand have mustered 76 and 67 runs respectively, leading to heavy defeats in both of those matches.
Ahead of a vital clash with Bangladesh at Newlands though, Tahuhu explained that the team have discussed their shortcomings and are ready and raring to go.
She said: “Obviously it was a pretty tough loss to swallow, we have had some good chats about it and we have had to find a way to pick ourselves upand move on, knowing we still have two really important games to go in this World Cup.
“We have had a couple of really good training sessions and I think the batters have been putting in a lot of work, certainly trying to look at ways we can improve our options.
“That is one of the things we have been looking at, so hopefully we can go out there tomorrow and put a better performance on the park.
“I think we need to make some better decisions with the bat, continue to be consistent with the ball, I think there are areas we can improve there, and certainly in the field as well, so all three facets of the game we are looking to get better at and hopefully we will put that out there.”
Tahuhu is just one wicket off being the leading wicket taker at the tournament, and after a 3-0 series win over Bangladesh in December, she is hoping to combine wicket-taking with winning this time around.
She added: “It has been nice to be picking up some wickets, but for me it doesn’t mean too much if we are not getting results.
“I am just trying to take as many wickets as I possibly can and put us in a good position, bowl them out for a little bit less and maybe we will be able to chase that down.
“We played them a couple of months ago and we had some success against them, so we will be looking to put similar plans out there and hopefully we can be successful.”
Tahuhu has been in form with the ball, but she will come up against one of the form batters in the tournament in Bangladesh captain Nigar Sultana, who sits fourth for most runs after her 57 against Australia.
Sultana, who is averaging 42.5 this tournament, believes that, despite their recent history with the White Ferns, her side are more than capable of earning their first win of the tournament at Newlands.
“We are a team that can give any team a little bit of a scare, whenever they are going to play against us, they are never going to take us lightly,” said Nigar.
“We have experience of playing against them, we went to New Zealand and we lost three matches over there, but there are a few positives we took.
“They have lost two matches, and so have we, but we played good cricket in the last two matches, so we have something we can carry forward into the next match.
“We have good momentum, we lost against Australia, but if we can play good cricket against New Zealand, we will give them a tough time hopefully.”