Australia captain Meg Lanning described her team's eight-wicket win in the Women's World T20 final as among the "most satisfying" she had been involved in, particularly because it came on the back of bitter disappointments in the past two ICC events.
"It's definitely the most satisfying win I've been involved in, especially after the last couple of World Cup exits for us," Lanning said in Antigua after beating England. "The last couple of World Cup exits for us hurt our team a lot. And we spoke about that as a group and not hiding away from that fact. But I think that the biggest thing has been that we've been able to learn and really grow as a group. I've got no doubt that this group is capable of something special. We've really put together an amazing squad and support staff."
Australia had last won a ICC tournament when they lifted the World T20 trophy in 2014. After that, in 2016, they reached the final only to be outplayed by West Indies, who won by eight wickets. Last year during the 50-over World Cup, they ran into Harmanpreet Kaur who blew them away with an innings of 171 not out in the semi-final.
Lanning hit the winning runs herself, completing a chase of 106 with eight wickets and 29 balls to spare. Having been Australia's batting mainstay for a long time, she was pleased with the depth that exists in the current side and highlighted the impact it has on her own game.
"With our batting line-up that we've got I feel like I can play a lot more freer," she said. "I can just go out there and play rather than feel like I've got a lot of responsibility. I think over the last year or so, we're not relying on one or two players anymore, and I think that probably found us out a little bit in the couple of World Cups previously.
"We understood it's about playing your role on the day and I had full confidence that everyone in that group today was going to play their role and could stand up if needed. So for the team to embrace that - especially in the T20 format where we've got eight opening batters, but everyone was willing to sort of sacrifice their own game to try and win the game for the team - I think that's why we're standing here today as champions, because everyone was willing to be selfless and really just do what they can to win."
Lanning also credited the systems put in place for the team for both throwing up new talent, as well as providing security to the team.
"There's no doubt that being professional allows us to put everything we can into becoming better cricketers and better people off the field as well," she said. "We're very lucky that we've got the support network behind the scenes to allow us to do that. And we just love what we do. I guess it's a job but, gee, it's a good one to do."