Hayley Matthews in action. ©ICC

Mary Waldron-Kim Garth’s 94-run partnership went in vain as Hayley Matthews and Chedean Nation’s swashbuckling knocks helped West Indies to cruise a 72-run win the final game against Ireland at Pembroke Cricket Club, Dublin on May 29. With this win, West Indies clinched the three-match series as well.

Asked to bat first, West Indies didn’t have a flying start as the openers Hayley Matthews and Britney Cooper managed to add 26 runs in first 5 overs before Cooper fell for mere 10. A stunning catch from Waldron up to the stump sent her in. However, that was the only dismissal in their innings as bowlers failed to dismiss any other batters.

Cooper’s dismissal brought Chedean Nation at the crease. They both joined hands to build the innings. While Matthews, the set batter took the charge by hitting a six and a four in consecutive balls off Little, Nation too didn’t waste time and joined the party in the following over. However, Raymond-Hoey failed to grab a catch from Nation at deep mid-wicket in the eighth over and as a result, being punished throughout the innings.

They put up 68 runs after 10 overs and after that, they changed the gear. Both accelerated the scoring and started hitting all over the park. Matthews smashed a boundary and three consecutive sixes off Raack in the 15th over which brought her fifty as well. However, she didn’t stop there and hit another two boundaries in the following over. Nation too hit a maximum over the leg side and reach 49.

When both the batters set their eye in, it became difficult for the bowlers to get past them. While back-to-back big shots brought Matthews’ maiden T20I century, Nation remained unbeaten at 63. Their quickfire 162-run stand which is a record in itself, helped West Indies to put up a huge total of 188 on board.

Chasing the huge competitive total, Ireland required a flying as well as a steady start which the openers Mary Waldron and Gaby Lewis failed to provide as Lewis again fell for a low score. However, Waldron and captain Kim Garth tried to resurrect the innings. Garth took on Connell in the fifth over for two boundaries while the bowlers kept maintaining the pressure for the next couple of overs.

They took the side past 50-mark in the eleventh over. Both of them slowly built the innings where Waldron scored her fifty in the penultimate over. Two boundaries came from that over off Connell and they stitched a 94-run stand before Garth fell short of 5 runs to her fifty. Taylor successfully broke the partnership where Garth gave a catch to Cooper at long-off. Taylor bowled Rebecca Stokell in the final ball of the innings and claimed an easy win.