13th Match, Group 2 (N), Cape Town, February 17, 2023, ICC Women's T20 World Cup
(19.5/20 ov, T:138) 140/4

W Indies (W) won by 6 wickets (with 1 ball remaining)

Player Of The Match
66* (53), 1/32 & 2 catches

Hayley Matthews lifts West Indies out of losing streak

Captain's unbeaten 66 breaks 15-game winless run as match goes down to the wire

Hayley Matthews brought up her seventh T20I fifty  •  ICC via Getty Images

Hayley Matthews brought up her seventh T20I fifty  •  ICC via Getty Images

West Indies 140 for 4 (Matthews 66*, Henry 34) beat Ireland 137 for 9 (Prendergast 61, Lewis 38, Connell 3-24) by six wickets
Captain Hayley Matthews led West Indies to a drought-breaking six-wicket victory over Ireland in their Women's T20 World Cup match at Newlands. The result ended West Indies' 15-match losing streak in T20Is and knocked Ireland out of the tournament with a third straight loss in the competition.
Chasing 138, Matthews hit an unbeaten 66 and took the team home with a ball to spare. Earlier, Orla Prendergast's 61 gave Ireland their highest total in a T20 World Cup. However, they collapsed at the end to finish on 137 for 9 which wasn't enough.

Captain's knock from Matthews

Matthews did the bulk of the scoring after being dropped on 8 and helped West Indies chase down 138 after a shaky start. West Indies lost opener Rashada Williams and Shemaime Campbelle for 46 runs before the halfway mark. Adding to that, they did not have Stafanie Taylor, who was stretchered off the field during West Indies' previous game against India, and had to miss out this time with a back injury. Chedean Nation was also ruled out with a knee problem.
Against that backdrop, Matthews took the responsibility to stay to the end and ensure the job was done. After seeing through the pitch with a run-a-ball 22, she picked up pace and found boundaries regularly off her trademark cut shots off the back foot. With Chinelle Henry at the other end providing a crisp 34, Matthews kept going strong to stitch a crucial 74-run stand off 55 deliveries for the third wicket. En route, Matthews brought up her seventh T20I half-century in 42 balls and slammed eight fours and a six in her 53-ball innings. That Ireland were sloppy in the field also helped West Indies.

Record partnership for Ireland

Ireland dominated the first 15 overs before collapsing in the last five after opting to bat first. Prendergast and Gaby Lewis started briskly to keep the scorecard ticking in their 90-run partnership for the second wicket. After Shamilia Connell struck in the second over to remove Amy Hunter, West Indies struggled to break the partnership. From scoring 5.5 runs an over in the first six, the duo - with the stand dominated by Prendergast - shifted gears to take the run rate to 9.11 from seven to 15 overs.
Prendergast started off with a glorious strike over extra cover for four and brought up her third T20I half-century in 40 balls with a slog-sweep over deep midwicket. In her 47-ball stay, she blasted six fours - three of which came through the covers - and one six.
It was also the highest partnership for Ireland Women in a T20 World Cup match. Lewis, on the other hand, was happy to play second fiddle, contributing 22 off 24 in the stand.

Ramharack, Fletcher strike late blows

West Indies got back into the game after 15 overs with Karishma Ramharack and Afy Fletcher striking at the death to spark Ireland's collapse. It began with the key wicket of Lewis (38), who was looking to up the ante after Prendergast's dismissal, and was trapped lbw by Ramharack. Two deliveries later she bowled Louise Little, who was promoted ahead of captain Laura Delany.
Eimear Richardson then punished Henry for two fours but Fletcher came back with a double strike, conceding just one run in the 18th over, to strangle Ireland. In no time, Ireland went from 115 for 2 to 137 for 9, losing six wickets for a mere 22 runs. Connell, who removed Hunter and Prendergast, accounted for Leah Paul in the final over to end with 3 for 24.

Srinidhi Ramanujam is a sub-editor with ESPNcricinfo

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