West Indies crowned World Champions
Teenager Hayley Matthews and Captain Stafanie Taylor fashioned half-centuries as West Indies Women produced a superb run chase to beat three-time defending champions Australia Women by eight wickets and lift their first-ever Twenty20 World Cup title.
Set 149 for victory at the historic Eden Gardens, West Indies Women reached their target with three balls to spare, with the 18-year-old Matthews top-scoring with 66 from 45 balls and the in-form Taylor getting 59 from 57 balls.
The pair put on a magnificent 120 for the first wicket to take Australia Women out of the contest, and even when Matthews fell in the 16th over, Deandra Dottin (18 not out) joined Taylor to add 24 for the second wicket to keep the Caribbean side on top.
West Indies Women entered the final over requiring three to win and Dottin reduced the target even further with a single to cover off seamer Ellyse Perry.
The result sparked scenes of jubilation across the outfield as the remainder of the women’s team, along with members of the men’s team, ran onto the ground to celebrate.
Earlier, Australia Women Captain Meg Lanning and Elyse Villani both struck 52 to get the title favourites up to 148 for five off their 20 overs, after opting to bat first.
Taylor and Matthews gave the Caribbean side a fabulous start, taking the attack to the Aussies as they raced to 76 without loss at the halfway mark.
The pair gathered just nine runs from the first three overs, but accelerated nicely throughout. Matthews smashed a pair of leg-side boundaries off seamer Rene Farrell in the fourth over and then got down to medium pacer Megan Schutt in the next over to deposit her over midwicket for six.