ICC Women's WC 2022 Final, Aus vs Eng, Top Performances: Alyssa Healy's 170, Megan Schutt 2-42 and Nat Sciver's fighting 148* are the top three performances
Brief Scores: Australia 356/5 (Healy 170, Haynes 68, Shrubsole 3-46) beat England 285 (Sciver 148*, Beaumont 27, Jonassen 3-57, King 3-64) by 71 runs
Player of the Match: Alyssa Healy (170 runs off 138 balls)
Player of the Tournament: Alyssa Healy (509 runs in 8 innings)
Four exciting weeks, thirty electrifying games, lots of ups and downs and lots of emotions were exchanged as the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022 finally found its two finalists, the old rivals, defending champions England who started their campaign with three back-to-back loses, and unbeaten Australia, who started the tournament as favourites.
England captain Heather Knight, winning the toss elected to bowl first. Although England unsurprisingly were going with an unchanged eleven, Australia breathed a sigh of relief welcoming Ellyse Perry back in the side who wasn’t available to bowl earlier due to injury.
Unbeaten Australia gained their seventh Women’s ODI World Cup
On a final’s day, asked to bat first, Australia finished their 50 overs with a daunting 356 runs on the board. The platform of the total was laid by the 160-run opening partnership between Alyssa Healy and Racheal Haynes. The former went on to blast an outstanding knock of 170 while being supported heavily by Beth Mooney in another 156-run stand for the second wicket.
A mammoth score added by the pressure of the finals perhaps had by then put one hand of Australia on the world cup trophy.
England didn’t make a good start and were pushed to 38/2 before Natalie Sciver joined them for rescue. Even though she held her head high with an unbeaten 148 runs, she didn’t get any support from the other end for a longer period of time as Australia kept on making regular inroads.
And with the last wicket of Anya Shrubsole, Australia won the final by 71 runs to collect their seventh ODI Women’s World Cup.
Let’s take a look at the top three performances from the AUS W vs ENG W final game:
Alyssa Healy blew away England with highest individual score in a World Cup Final
They say that the best players always wait for the big days to showcase their skill before the world and the Hagley Oval in Christchurch had been touched by the greatness of Alyssa Healey.
In the beginning of their batting, Healy was playing second fiddle by mostly taking time in the middle with odd boundaries coming off her blade. As time progressed, she gathered pace and made her way to a decent half-century. Even though she lost her opening partner, she didn’t stop at all. Some of the shots that she nailed down the ground for boundaries with minimum effort were proofs of her elegance and grace.
With a single in the 35th over, the Australia wicketkeeper raised her bat for a delightful century. This hundred followed her last century in the semis against the West Indies which added her to an elite list of Ricky Ponting and Mahela Jayawardene to score two centuries in ODI World Cup knockouts. She became just the second centurion in the Women’s World Cup final after Karen Rolton in 2005. To add to this, she joined Debbie Hockley (1997) to score consecutive tons in ODI World Cups.
With a scoop to welcome another boundary, Healy, taking herself to 150, became the maiden player to register 150+ runs in any ICC event final. Later, with 170 besides her name, she left the field with roar and applauses from the crowd. Meanwhile, with 509 runs in the tournament, she surpassed her teammate Rachael Haynes (497 runs) to be the highest run-scorer in a single Women’s World Cup edition. Her 170 is now the highest individual score in an ODI final going past Adam Gilchrist’s 149 in 2007.
Nonetheless, the Alyssa hailstorm just blew away the dream for England of defending their crown.
Lone fighter for England, Nat Sciver held her head high with undefeated 148
England didn’t make a healthy start in their chase being pushed to 38-2 in the seventh over. Natalie Sciver walked out in the middle for the rescue act. In the group stage meeting between the two sides, Sciver had piled up an outstanding unbeaten 109 runs off just 85 balls in a losing cause.
Just like Healy, she too took some time at the crease to stop the wickets falling from one end and tried to understand the conditions of the 22-yard. But a six that she pulled against Alana King over wide long on showed that she was in a good space of mind. Soon after the wicket of captain Heather Knight, Sciver went into an attacking mode as she brought up an excellent half-century on a final’s night off just 53 balls.
Australia were still picking up wickets from the other end but Sciver stood in the middle from one end like a rock and kept on hammering the opposition attack. With a single in the 35th over, she hoisted her bat for a century in the WC final but sadly wasn’t receiving the requisite support from her teammates.
She stood unbeaten on 148 as England were bundled out for 285, failing to defend their crown. Her 148* is now the highest score in unsuccessful chase in Women’s ODIs.
Megan Schutt picked two crucial wickets to grab early advantage
The best thing that Australia could ask for after posting such a huge score was hunting few early wickets in the powerplay and their right arm medium fast bowler, Megan Schutt provided them the cushion.
Danielle Wyatt was in some red-hot form after securing 129 runs in the semifinal against a fabulous South African bowling line-up. And Australia couldn’t afford to let her score freely on the final’s night too. Schutt got rid of Wyatt on the very first ball of her second over; the booming inswinger came fast to Wyatt who had very little to do as a batter.
On the other hand, opener Tammy Beaumont was off to a flying start gathering 27 off just 26 balls and was looking good for a big score but Schutt again broke her dream. She bowled an inswinger that found Beaumont plumb before the leg stump. Australia had sent back both the England openers back to the pavilion pushing them to 38-2 just in the sixth over.
Megan Schutt finished the game with figures of 2-42 in eight overs.
Alyssa Healy (Player of the match and Tournament)
“Being 32, I have seen all of these. Our team sets out to win the events like these and everyone was sort of pumped up to get out there and do the job. Obviously, we have done some fabulous things in the whole tournament,” she said at the post-match presentation ceremony.
“So, being able to do that for one more time in the biggest stage was so impressive. Never in my wildest dream did I ever thought of doing something like this, so it’s pretty cool. We knew that we just had to hold our nerves and we ticked all boxes,” she added.
Heather Knight (England captain)
“Yes, perhaps, a 50-50 decision at the toss but credit to Australia for that sort of performances in a World Cup final. That was a remarkable innings for sure and to be honest not really a pleasant thing to watch but it’s one of those best innings I have seen live,” Knight said.
“From Nat, the skill she showed against the spinners and pacers all-round was excellent but sadly we weren’t able to stay with her. We would learn from that on how to take the game away from the opposition after getting set in the near future. Some of the players have been outstanding from this group and special mention to Sophie Ecclestone, the leading wicket-taker. It was a real pleasure to watch those younger ones doing well and they can certainly be proud of themselves.”
Meg Lanning (Australian captain)
“We certainly have been extremely consistent over a long period of time and to perform like that throughout the tournament, I think we are the deserving side for tonight. We had some young players come in and straightaway made an impact on the game which is great for the team and the veterans to keep them pushing to get better. The support had been excellent from the support staff and the coaching staff to take us to that point,” she said.
“Healy has been incredible in the world cup final. We have talked about batting groups and being patient and building the platform to explode at the backend. There is some very powerful depth in our squad. We have seen Alana King and Darcie Brown dominating and lifting the whole group which makes it easy not to rely on few players. There are ups and downs but it’s nice to get to the end and be able to say we are the World Cup Champions,” she added.
Here are some of the top twitter reactions from AUSW vs ENGW World Cup Final: