Inspired by a swashbuckling 75 by player of the match Alyssa Healy (whose brother-in-law Brandon Starc won Commonwealth gold in the high jump on the Gold Coast) and an unbeaten 78 by player of the tournament Beth Mooney, Australia claimed back-to-back T20 World Cup crowns.
The final was a brilliant celebration on International Women’s Day and a display of what will come in Birmingham in 2022 when women’s T20 cricket makes its Commonwealth Games debut.
After compiling an imposing total of 184, Australia were just as dominant bowling as they were batting. Led by captain Meg Lanning, Megan Schutt captured four wickets and Jess Jonassen three, India were all out for 99 as Australia won their fifth T20 title in front of 86,714 fans at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
The crowd set a record for the highest ever attendance for a women’s sporting event in Australia.
The tournament remained wide open until the final few matches, reflecting the increasing strength of women’s cricket globally. The competitiveness of the cricket saw seven of the 20 matches go to the final over for the result.
Birmingham 2022 is set to break the record for the largest ever female and para-sport programme following the Commonwealth Games Federation’s announcement in June 2019 that Women’s T20 Cricket would be one of three additional sports added for the Games.
Beach Volleyball joins the sports programme for Birmingham 2022 following a hugely successful Commonwealth Games debut at Gold Coast 2018, where it became one of the star attractions at the Games, and Para Table Tennis also returns following its debut on the Gold Coast.
The Games will have more para sports on the programme at a Commonwealth Games than ever before, with eight para sports now confirmed for the multi-sport competition.
Commonwealth Games Australia President Ben Houston said the announcements gives sports fans the opportunity to see the world’s best women cricketers compete for medals on the international stage.
“Commonwealth Games Australia is particularly excited about the inclusion of women’s T20 cricket. Australia has shown in hosting the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup the game continues to grow in popularity throughout Australia and the Commonwealth,” Houston said.