The automatic qualifiers for the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2024 have been identified after the end of the eighth edition of the tournament that saw Australia win their sixth title at Newlands in Cape Town on Sunday, with Sri Lanka and Ireland failing to get direct qualification for the tournament.
Eight teams earn a direct qualification while the remaining two spots are to be identified through a global qualifier, as per the International Cricket Council (ICC). As per the qualification process, the top three teams from each group earn direct qualification along with the hosts and the highest-ranked team outside of the six direct qualifiers from the 10-team tournament.
Australia, New Zealand and South Africa are the teams to earn direct qualification as the top three teams of Group 1 in the league stage while England, India and the West Indies similarly make it from Group 2.
Bangladesh qualify as hosts of the ninth edition of the tournament while Pakistan makes it by virtue of being the next highest-ranked team in the ICC Women’s T20I Team Rankings as of February 27, 2023.
The remaining two spots will be identified through a global qualifier to be held in early 2024. The dates and venues of this tournament will be announced in due course.
Of the teams who played in this year’s tournament, Sri Lanka and Ireland are the teams failing to get direct qualification. Sri Lanka is currently ranked eighth in the rankings while Ireland is 10th.
Coming to the final match between Australia and South Africa, Australia put up 156/6 on the board in their 20 overs after electing to bat first. Beth Mooney shined for Australia with an unbeaten 74 in 53 balls, with nine fours and a six. Gardner also contributed a vital 29-run knock of 21 balls.
Shabnim Ismail (2/26) finished as the leading wicket-taker for her side. Marizanne Kaap also took two wickets for 35 runs. Nonkululeko Mlaba and Chloe Tryon took a wicket each.
In the chase of 157, South Africa was struggling at 54/3 in 10.4 overs. A 55-run stand for the fourth wicket between Laura Wolvaardt and Chloe Tryon brought back the hosts into the game. But Australia re-established their grip on the match by dismissing Laura for a 48-ball 61, consisting of five fours and three sixes. The hosts were restricted to 137/6 in their 20 overs, losing the match by 19 runs.
Megan Schutt, Gardner, Darcie Brown and Jess Jonassen each took a wicket.
Mooney was named as the ‘Player of the Match’ for her half-century.
Ashleigh also clinched the ‘Player of the Tournament’ award. She made 110 runs in five innings at an average of 36.66 and a strike rate of 119.56. Her best individual score in the tournament was 31. She also finished as the second-highest wicket-taker in the tournament, taking 10 wickets in the tournament at an economy rate of 6.25, with the best bowling figures of 6.25.
Brief Scores: South Africa: 137/6 (Laura Wolvaardt 61, Chloe Tryon 25, Ashleigh Gardner 1/20) lost to Australia: 156/6 (Beth Mooney 74*, Gardner 29, Shabnim Ismail 2/26). (ANI).