West Indies are enduring a poor run of results in the shortest format but with quality and experience in their ranks, could well turn up the heat and defy the formbook at the grandest stage of them all.
Hayley Matthews (c), Shemaine Campbelle (vc), Aaliyah Alleyne, Shamilia Connell, Afy Fletcher, Shabika Gajnabi, Chinelle Henry, Trishan Holder, Zaida James, Djenaba Joseph, Chedean Nation, Karishma Ramharack, Shakera Selman, Stafanie Taylor, Rashada Williams.
Best finish at the tournament
A day that no West Indies fan will ever forget. Playing at the iconic Eden Gardens stadium in Kolkata, West Indies completed the double.
It was all started by the West Indies women's team, who beat the mighty Australians by chasing down a target of 149 in the final over. Skipper of the current side – Hayley Matthews – was the star of the chase, with a brilliant knock of 66.
This was followed up by the men's side triumphing over England in the final in what turned out to be a golden day for cricket in the Caribbean islands.
Results in the last 10 T20I games
(Most recent first): L, L, L, L, L, L, L, L, L, L
v England, February 11, Paarl
v India, February 15, Cape Town
v Ireland, February 17, Cape Town
v Pakistan, February 19, Paarl
v England, February 11 – West Indies have been pitted in a tough group, which includes two of the strongest sides in the tournament, England and India.
To qualify out of the tough group, starting the tournament on a high note is a must for the Caribbean outfit. They will start their campaign against a strong England side and will need to overturn their recent poor form to deliver an upset.
West Indies recently played in a five-match T20I series at home against England, enduring a 5-0 whitewash. But it has often been when their backs are against the wall that this West Indies group deliver some of their finest performances.
Hayley Matthews – With West Indies struggling to win matches in recent times, they will turn to their skipper and most influential player, Hayley Matthews, to stand up on the big occasion.
The skipper is no stranger to delivering on the big stage, with her knock against Australia in 2016 still fondly remembered by one and all.
One of world cricket's finest all-rounders, Matthews has a ton of experience. She has played 78 T20Is, scoring 1451 runs. She has also scalped up 74 wickets.
Her biggest challenge will be to inspire her troops though, as her tactical nous and ability to manage the side will be severely tested, especially after their poor run of results.
In light of their recent results, very few will back West Indies to qualify out of the group stage. On a long losing streak in the format, the Caribbean outfit are enduring one of their worst phases.
They have lost all of their recent outings against two of their opponents in the group – England and India. To get out of the group, they will have to win at least one of the two matches against either of those sides.
West Indies will then have to be perfect in their matches against Pakistan and Ireland, but will back themselves to beat them. But if they don't snap out of their poor form, their tournament could be over relatively early.
Despite the recent streak, no one will quite rule West Indies out completely to reach the semi-finals as they have enough experience and talent in their ranks. Despite having an ageing squad, some of the experienced campaigners could turn it on, with the tournament likely to be their swansong.
Matthews perfectly summed up the desire in the squad to lay hands on the trophy again, stating in the captain's column for ICC, "We now have a renewed hunger to get our hands on the trophy once again. We believe a confident run can also bring about the breakout of budding talent within the squad."