Women’s T20 World Cup semi-finalists are confirmed
The teams who will compete in the knockout stage of the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023 have been confirmed, with the result of the final match of the group stage sealing South Africa’s progress.
The semi-finals will be fought out between four of the five top-ranked teams in the world, after a fascinating group stage came to a conclusion on Tuesday. Both of the semi-finals will be held at Newlands in Cape Town, with the four teams competing for spots in the final at the same ground on Sunday.
The first of the two semis will be a repeat of the 2020 T20 World Cup final, when India take on defending champions Australia on Thursday. And Friday’s second semi-final will see England, who topped their qualifying group with four straight wins, face South Africa.
The Four Semi-Finalists
The top-ranked side in the world are aiming for a hat-trick of Women’s T20 World Cup titles, and remain favourites after a dominant showing in the group stage.Meg Lanning’s side won all four of their group matches and rarely looked in trouble. Stopping them will be a tough task for India.
A record win over Pakistan saw England complete their group-stage campaign in style. Four wins from four and the best net run rate in the tournament are great indicators that this is an England side in form. The batters are scoring at a fiery rate, while the team’s three-pronged spin attack will be a handful on the Newlands surface.
India made it through with relative ease in the end, despite slipping to a loss to England in their third match. Wins over Pakistan and West Indies saw Harmanpreet Kaur’s side begin the tournament well, and they were effectively already through when they took to the field to play Ireland in their final match due to a superior net run rate. Rain denied the chance for that game to be completed, but India looked in a strong position thanks to having batted really nicely.
The opening loss to Sri Lanka and an extremely nervous showing against Bangladesh in the final game will be a cause for concern for South Africa. But the World Cup hosts have made it through to the knockout stages after that dreadful start to the tournament, and their bowling attack in particular will be a big threat in the knockout stages.
Nonkululeko Mlaba has been superb, and the quality pace trio of Shabnim Ismail, Marizanne Kapp and Ayabonga Khaka are of the high-class standard required to upset England and any potential final opponent.