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ESPNcricinfo Awards

ESPNcricinfo Awards 2023 Women's T20I batting nominees: Mooney trots, Matthews gallops

World Cup innings take pride of place on this shortlist

S Sudarshanan
S Sudarshanan
27-Jan-2024
Chamari Athapaththu kicked off the World Cup with a big upset over hosts South Africa  •  ICC/Getty Images

Chamari Athapaththu kicked off the World Cup with a big upset over hosts South Africa  •  ICC/Getty Images

Tazmin Brits
68 vs England
World Cup semi-final, Cape Town

After Laura Wolvaardt was out in the 14th over, Brits danced down the track to legspinner Sarah Glenn to hit her for two sixes in the 15th - one over deep midwicket and one over long-on. Those moments defined her crucial innings in South Africa's historic semi-final win. She took time to get set and then helped her side capitalise on the opening stand, staying in till the end of the 18th over, and hitting six fours and two sixes in her score.
Jemimah Rodrigues
53 not out vs Pakistan
World Cup, Cape Town

It took Rodrigues a while to find her magic touch. Eighteen balls into the innings, she was on 19, but she battled on, losing a couple of partners at the other end in a tricky chase. But in the company of Richa Ghosh, she ensured India kept their track record against Pakistan clean. Though the asking rate mounted at the death, Rodrigues kept her calm and helped India execute their highest chase at a women's T20 World Cup. She hit eight fours, including the winning runs - backing away and lofting one over cover.
Chamari Athapaththu
68 vs South Africa
World Cup, Cape Town

An upset win for Sri Lanka was completed by the bowlers but it was Athapaththu, the captain, who set it up. She hit their first boundary when she slashed Marizanne Kapp through cover in the fourth over. Sri Lanka only made 28 in the powerplay, and were on 45 at the halfway mark. Athapaththu then struck three consecutive fours off Nadine de Klerk in the 11th over, and repeated the dose in the 16th. She eventually was out in a two-wicket Kapp over, but had managed to help Sri Lanka to a score that proved just enough in the end.
Beth Mooney
74 not out vs South Africa
World Cup final, Cape Town

It was the second T20 World Cup final in a row where Mooney starred and helped Australia retain their title. The surface was the one on which both the semi-finals were played, and slow and not conducive to strokeplay. Mooney adapted, batting long and steady, accumulating her runs. The longer she stayed, the wearier and warier South Africa grew. She seldom let balls go past without scoring off them, while not really changing the tempo of her innings. She played the fields expertly and ensured Australia did not lose the momentum. Or, it turned out, the T20 World Cup.
Hayley Matthews
132 vs Australia
second T20I, Sydney

Choosing to bowl, West Indies conceded 212. Phoebe Litchfield equalled the record for the fastest fifty in women's T20Is. In the first T20I, the day before, Matthews was left stranded unbeaten on 99. This time, she levelled up, with a stunning century off 53 balls, before falling in the penultimate over, leaving West Indies on the brink of a win. It was the biggest target successfully chased in women's T20Is. Of Matthews' 25 boundaries, 19 came through the off side - 77 runs from cover drives alone - and she hit 20 fours and five sixes in all.

S Sudarshanan is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo