Mumbai: Underdogs West Indies stunned five-time champions Australia by eight runs in a thrilling low-scoring Super Six stage match to storm into the final of the ICC Women's Cricket World Cup against the same opponents at the MIG Club ground here Wednesday.
Needing to win the match to qualify for the February 17th final at the Brabourne Stadium, the Windies women defended their modest total of 164 with plenty of zeal and pluck to snatch victory with eight balls to spare.
West Indies' first-ever win over Australia in ODIs also rendered other Super Six game between defending champions England and New Zealand at the Brabourne into an academic affair as irrespective of whoever wins that game, they will have to fight again for the third place play-off on February 15. Both Australia, who have already booked their berth ahead of their final league match, and the West Indies secured eight points from four wins in the Super Six stage.
Chasing a modest total of 164 set by West Indies, Australia were inching their way to the target after facing some anxious moments early on after the loss of openers Meg Lanning and Rachael Haynes with only 32 on board, when disaster struck in the form of the dismissal of top scorer Alexandra Blackwell for 45 off 83 balls with four fours.
From 130 for four, Australia slumped to 156 all out in a dramatic collapse following Blackwell's departure while playing the sweep shot and falling leg before to Stefanie Taylor. Her wicket, after she had added 41 runs with captain Jodie Fields triggered a slide in which Australia lost six wickets for the addition of 26 runs to slump to their defeat. The Aussies lost Blackwell, Fields and Julie Hunter for the addition of one run to stare defeat at 131 for 7 and then Renee Chappell at 140.