Whether it’s Katherine Brunt’s three wickets in England’s 2009 victory or Stafanie Taylor shining for the West Indies in 2016 or India’s Harmanpreet Kaur playing a swashbuckling innings, the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup has provided cricket aficionados with plenty of fond memories to savour.
There have been three winners (with Australia dominating), six countries hosting and countless memorable moments since the inaugural ICC Women’s T20 World Cup back in 2009.
With 11 years having passed since the inaugural tournament in England, we’ve witnessed plenty of thrills and spills, but a few moments stand head and shoulders above the rest.
2009 - Brunt’s brilliance at Lord’s
There’ll be few better Women’s T20 World Cup memories for England fans than those of the inaugural 2009 tournament – and what better way to make your mark on the world stage than by lifting the trophy on home soil?
England and New Zealand contested the inaugural Women’s T20 World Cup final at Lord’s, with the host nation bowling out the White Ferns for 85 thanks to Brunt’s opening spell of 3/6.
England shone from start to finish, with Claire Taylor taking the Player of the Series accolade while Holly Colvin finishing with a tournament-high nine wickets.
Colvin and Taylor were joined by Charlotte Edwards, Sarah Taylor and Laura Marsh in the ICC Team of the Tournament.
2010 - Perry’s boot seals maiden glory
As Women’s T20 World Cup Finals go, there will never be a moment quite like Australia’s last-ball victory in 2010.
Australia began their unparalleled run of World Cup success ten years ago when they edged out New Zealand by three runs in Barbados - but if it hadn’t been for Ellyse Perry’s right foot, it could have been a very different story.
Sophie Devine was on strike with New Zealand needing five to win from the final ball and hammered a powerful drive towards the boundary from Perry’s delivery.
But the Australian - who has also played in a football World Cup for her country - somehow managed to stick out her right foot and deflect the ball to mid-on to concede a single and take her team to their maiden Women’s T20 World Cup victory.
The tournament also saw West Indies’ Deandra Dottin score the first women’s T20I century, 112 not out against South Africa. Her century came in just 38 balls and is still the fastest in WT20Is.
2012 - Australia clinch second title
There was a familiar feel to 2012 as Australia clinched a narrow victory, beating England in the final by four runs in Sri Lanka.
Jess Cameron shone with a match-winning 45 in Colombo, while Julie Hunter impressed throughout by taking 11 wickets in the tournament.
The highest individual score fell to England’s Sarah Taylor with 65 not out against the eventual champions in the group stage, while Dottin was once again instrumental in West Indies’ route to the semi-finals, hitting an unbeaten 58 in victory over New Zealand.
2014 - Bangladesh break the mould
It was a case of déjà vu in 2014 as Australia celebrated their third successive Women’s T20 World Cup title with a six-wicket win over England in the final.
But the tournament in Bangladesh had so much more to offer than just delight for those in yellow.
The hosts were unable to progress beyond the group stage but their maiden win on debut was certainly one of the tournament highlights. Rumana Ahmed’s side had edged out Sri Lanka by three runs in Sylhet.
It was captain Rumana who put in a Player of the Match performance on that day, hitting 41 off 34 balls – a feat she and her country will be eager to recreate in Australia this month.
2016 - West Indies the winners
The 2016 Women’s T20 World Cup was one like no other as the Australian dominance was broken and a new world champion emerged.
Having lost the semi-final on three previous occasions, the West Indies finally broke their curse by making the showpiece in Kolkata - the match that changed the narrative around women’s T20 cricket.
Stafanie Taylor’s side secured their maiden world title in stunning fashion - overcoming reigning champions Australia was one thing but chasing down 149 runs to win the match by eight wickets was truly something else.
The 2016 edition is one that will live long in the memories of West Indies supporters and players alike, with many of them writing their names in the history books on the world stage.
Captain Taylor broke the tournament record by scoring 246 runs, while Anisa Mohammed became the first player, male or female, to take 100 T20I wickets.
2018 - Perry rewrites history
In 2018, Australia were back on top - and they made sure they secured their fourth Women’s T20 World Cup title in stunning fashion.
Most memorable may be Ashleigh Gardner’s Player of the Match performance in the eight-wicket final victory over England, the all-rounder scoring 33 runs and taking three wickets, but once again Meg Lanning’s side was full of stand-out performers.
Alyssa Healy blew Ireland away with her 21-ball half century in the group stages, while Perry was as instrumental as ever, becoming the first Australian, male or female, to take 100 T20I wickets when she trapped Nat Sciver lbw in the final.
2018 - Harmanpreet Kaur’s century
And finally, arguably the most memorable T20 World Cup moment from an Indian point of view.
In the first match of the ICC Women’s World T20, 2018, India captain Harmanpreet Kaur made jaws drop like only she can. And make no mistake, it might not have been in a knockout match, but that was a massive game not just for India: it was, for the sport in general. It was the first time the Women’s World T20 was given a platform of its own.
The Indian captain smashed a brilliant century in a virtual quarter-final, with eight sixes in her innings. That glorious bat-swing of hers was in full view as the tournament got off to a fantastic start.
If the 2020 edition is anything like the six tournaments gone by, then the world is surely in for a cracker.
With Thailand making their debut on the global stage, teenage debutants looking to make an impact and the prospect of a world record crowd for a women’s sporting event being broken at the MCG on 8 March, this year’s tournament has all the makings of being the best one yet.
(With ICC inputs)