Winning the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup is nothing new for Australia but the emotions of achieving that result for the fifth time in history but this time in front of home fans who turned up in numbers at the Melbourne Cricket Ground was a clearly surreal moment even for the otherwise stoic Meg Lanning.
Alyssa Healy (75) and Beth Mooney (78) struck the highest scores in tournament’s finals history while Megan Schutt (4/18) finished as leading wicket-taker with hosts turning out to be dominant champions.
A record-breaking attendance for a women’s cricket match of 86,174 watched on as Australia downed first-time finalists India by 85 runs at the MCG, with the openers setting the tone for a clinical performance. India were bowled out for 99 in their chase of 185.
For Meg Lanning, meanwhile, the greatest moment in her career is complete – following in the footsteps of Lyn Larsen and Michael Clarke in winning an ICC event as Australia captain on home soil. This meant Australia are also five-time champions in seven editions, featuring in six finals and losing just once.
History of ICC Women's T20 World Cup winners
|2010||West Indies||Australia||New Zealand|
On the other hand, Harmanpreet Kaur and Co’s heartbreaking defeat meant India’s recent run of big-match disappointments continued at ICC events.
In 2019, after topping the round-robin stage in British shores, Virat Kohli’s red-hot side was eliminated in the first knockout match after what the Indian captain described as 30 minutes of bad cricket in Manchester against New Zealand.
At the start of 2020, India’s Under-19 side (arguably in the tournament where India has had the best results recently) suffered disappointment in South Africa as Bangladesh emerged champions. This was the second time in third editions that the U19 side lost in the final, while 2018 saw Prithvi Shaw and Co win without losing a match.
For the women’s team, it was the third straight defeat in a ICC knock-out match (in which play was possible) after the famous win against Australia in the 2017 ODI World Cup. Defeats against England in the final at Lord’s that year and in the semi-final in 2018 at the World T20, have now been followed by another loss in the T20 World Cup in Melbourne.
While on the flip-side, India have regularly reached semi-finals or better in almost every ICC event in the past few years, the lack of silverware will continue to rankle Indian fans for a few more months before Kohli and Co look to go one better than their women’s counterparts later this year Down Under.