By Shashank Kishore in Colombo
West Indies women's team star thanks Chris Gayle and the male players for showering the girls with attention but conceded that the men are better dancers
Both the women's and the men's semi-finals will feature West Indies and Australia on October 5 (Friday) at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo and Taylor is looking forward to the big clash and the occasion. "Everybody is really excited. It is great that the men are also playing in the semi-final against Australia," said Taylor. "It is going to be a great day and we are really looking forward to it and we are working really hard."
"The fact that both matches are on Friday makes it really special. The men are supporting us 100 per cent and we are also behind them. We hope that we both make it through to the finals," added Taylor.
Taylor is currently the leading wicket-taker in the women's competition. Her consistency earned her the 'ICC Women's T20 Player of the Year' award recently too. She was modest when asked about her recognition and said the award was a result of the hard work, not just put in by her but also by the team.
She also felt that the team bonding together both on and off the field was translating into results on the field. "It was pretty amazing for Chris Gayle to get together the squads and have a laugh together. He made a speech and it was very touching to know that he is thinking about us. We are all working really hard to take the Cup home," opined Taylor.
West Indies has not only put up an attacking brand of cricket on display, but also its celebration after taking a wicket or winning, especially the dance has been very unique, further signs of a team enjoying each other's success. "We are actually doing it as well. It was quite funny to see Chris Gayle doing a dance like that,” laughed Taylor. "I am not sure I can do it – but the rest of the girls like doing it. Trust me – it looks nice and everybody seems to be replicating him. I think the men’s team are the better dancers though!"
Despite being in a relaxed frame of mind, Taylor believes the team is firmly focused ahead of the semi-final clash against Australia. "I think it is going to be a tough game and we know that Australia will come hard at us," said Taylor. "We played them in a warm-up game and we know Australia will be very good. I know they are thinking the same about us too. Hopefully the best team will win.
"With the game taking place just before the men's match would mean better crowds to witness the contest. It is also an opportunity for the players to showcase their talent to the television audience, as it would be broadcast across several continents. "Everybody will have a chance to see what the women can actually do. Lots of people may have heard about the West Indies ladies team, but not many will have had a chance to watch us play," said Taylor.
Although West Indies have performed well as a team, Taylor and Deandra Dottin have led the way with the bat, while the others are yet to come to the party. But Taylor feels that is not a worry as the team is confident ahead of the semi-final. "We know we contribute a lot to the team. If we can give them the start that we know we can, I think the team will feel much better. We are two of the stronger players who can produce results and we do have other players who can do the same, who at the moment are not at their best. It would be great if we can showcase something good," hoped Taylor.
West Indies won two out of its three matches in the group stages. Its only loss came against Sri Lanka, where it choked under pressure and faltered in a chase of 48 off 8 overs. Taylor brushed aside any question of nerves and said the side is well equipped to handle the pressure.
"The Sri Lanka game was pretty intense and I think we panicked. Coming down to the last game against South Africa we knew it was a do-or-die game. I think we produce better results when we are under pressure generally and we are just hoping we will do well," said Taylor.