West Indies one hurdle from final
West Indies will have their chance of qualifying for their maiden World Cup final when they face Australia, who are unbeaten in the tournament, in the crucial Super Six tie at the MIG Ground in Mumbai. Offspinner Anisa Mohammed, was upbeat about her team's positive showing tomorrow.
"We are very confident of defeating Australia tomorrow," she said. "We are one win away from a final, we have waited for years for this opportunity and we are set and ready to go into the finals."
West Indies are currently second in the points table with six points, two more than England and New Zealand. If they put a halt to Australia's unbeaten run, they will qualify for the finals. A loss, on the other hand, will bring them at par with the winner of the other Super Six fixture in Mumbai, between England and New Zealand, and it will be down to their net run-rates.
"If we stick to our basics and keep supporting each other, everything will fall into place. Last time we played Sri Lanka here we posted a big total batting first. We also played Australia at the same venue, in a warm-up match, so we have a feel of the ground and the pitch here. We are just going to go out there tomorrow and do our best."
West Indies have never beaten Australia in ODIs, having played only three times since their first match in the 1993 World Cup. Anisa said they would like to change that.
"They are the only team we haven't defeated in the world. But I can guarantee you that that is going to change tomorrow. They have beaten all the teams so far, but tomorrow it will be their day to lose."
Australia batsman Jess Cameron was equally positive about her team's good showing against West Indies.
"We want to go through undefeated in the whole tournament," she said. "That would make the other teams look at us and have some sort of fear. We'll be going out there, trying to win every match, and obviously try and win the finals too."
Australia, Cameron said, are aware of West Indies' two dangerous batsmen - Deandra Dottin and Stafanie Taylor - who they will aim to dismiss cheaply. While Taylor is the second-highest run-getter in the tournament so far, with 304 runs at an average of 60.80, Dottin has scored 144 runs in five innings at a strike rate of 173.49, including a 22-ball 50 against Sri Lanka.
"I think [Deandra] Dottin is their key wicket and Stafanie Taylor at the top of the order. If we can get those two cheaply then I think we'll do well. We know that if we can get some of their players early, it will be detrimental to their batting.
"We've got a batting line up that's as strong as the West Indies'. We will have to work hard and our bowlers will have to do a good job just like our batsmen. If our batsmen and bowlers can put it together, I don't think we can be beaten so we are looking to do that in the next two games."
While Australia have booked a place for their sixth World Cup final on Sunday, West Indies' victory tomorrow will make the result of the England - New Zealand match inconsequential.
Vishal Dikshit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo