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ICC Women’s World Cup: Australia Skipper Meg Lanning Impresses With Her Team’s Depth in Batting Department

Australia skipper Meg Lanning on Sunday hailed the team’s batting order, saying that the beauty of it is defined by the depth. In their match against New Zealand at the Basin Reserve in the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup, Australia was reduced to 113/4.

But Ellyse Perry (68) and Tahlia McGrath (57) put up a stand of 101 for the fifth wicket before Ashleigh Gardner’s late blitz of 48 off just 18 balls powered Australia to 269/8 in 50 overs.

Australia then defended 270 with aplomb as New Zealand were bowled out for just 128. The huge 141-run win has now taken Australia to the top of the points table.

“We thought we were in a bit of pressure, but that’s the beauty of our batting lineup that we have great depth. We have players who can rescue us in a way that allows us to build the platform to play the way we did at the back end,” said Meg in the post-match presentation ceremony.

Meg was delighted with Ashleigh’s return to the eleven after she tested positive for Covid-19 and had to be isolated.

“It was great to have Gardner back, it was a tough 10 days for her and looking forward to the rest of the tournament for her. It certainly gave us the momentum going into the bowling innings.”

Meg was also pleased with Australia fetching early wickets to push New Zealand out of winning the match after Ashleigh, Ellyse and Tahlia did exceedingly well with the bat. In defence of 269, young pacer Darcie Brown took the new ball and dismissed Amelia Kerr, Suzie Bates and Frankie Mackay in a brilliant seven-over spell.

“It certainly gave us the momentum going into the bowling innings. We felt it was a good score without being a match-winning one, we knew we had to take early wickets, that’s why we went hard early with the ball. I had told (Megan) Schutt that she may not open the bowling, but I’m not sure she was prepared to come on so late. Bit different today but it seemed to work.”

Meg admitted that leaving left-arm spin spearhead and number one ODI bowler Jess Jonassen out of playing eleven wasn’t an easy decision.

“We had a tough selection today, Jess Jonassen missed out, she is a world-class bowler but we felt we wanted the extra pace option was the way to go because we wanted to be aggressive up front. It worked today, it may not another day, but that’s the way we want to look at every game this World Cup.”

Australia’s next match in the tournament is against the West Indies at the same venue on Tuesday.

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