Young Georgia Wareham leads Australia to semi-finals, beats New Zealand in a thriller

It was a cracker of a contest at the Junction Oval, Melbourne, between the Trans-Tasmanian rivals Australia and New Zealand on Monday, as the two sides clashed against each other in a do or die match. Winning the toss and electing to bowl first, Sophie Devine and co. restricted the Aussies to 155-5 in 20 overs.

 

Georgia Wareham
Georgia Wareham. Pic Credits: ICC

 

Riding on opening bat Beth Mooney’s terrific innings of 60 (50), that included six boundaries and two massive hits over the fence, the hosts marched on to put up a challenging score on board. Towards the end, it was vice-captain Rachael Haynes’ unbeaten cameo (19 off 8) that helped the Australians to go past the 150-run mark. With the ball, Anna Peterson was the highest wicket-taker for the White Ferns as she scalped 2-31 in her four overs.

Chasing a challenging score of 156 in a virtual quarterfinal, there was pressure in the New Zealand camp. Though the opening pair of wicket-keeper Rachel Priest (17) and skipper Sophie Devine (31) provided a steady start to the run chase, there was a lot left to be done in the end with over 12 runs to get in the last four overs. Maddy Green (28) played her bit but was stumped against the run of play. Katey Martin who was exceptional with the bat, smashing an unbeaten 38 (17) failed to see her side home. Despite Ellyse Perry pulling out in the middle of the game, the Aussies held their nerves to reduce the White Ferns to 151-7 in 20 overs, sneaking in a nail-biting four-run victory. Pace spearhead Megan Schutt (3-28) and 20-year old leggie Georgia Wareham (3-17) were the wreckers-in-chief as they rattled the opposition batting line-up.

Georgia Wareham bagged the Player of the Match for her fantastic bowling effort as she picked up three key wickets of Sophie Devine, Suzie Bates, and Maddy Green.

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With this win, the Aussies have entered their seventh semi-final in as many ICC World T20s and will go-ahead to play against either England or South Africa at the iconic Sydney Cricket Ground on Thursday.

On the other hand, the White Ferns would be very disappointed about having missed out on the ticket to the semi-final train. They played some good cricket but unfortunately were knocked out from the World T20.

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