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Warm-up round-up: Sri Lanka, Scotland dominant ahead of ICC Women's T20 World Cup Qualifier

There were thrillers aplenty as teams vying for the two ICC Women's T20 World Cup 2024 spots fine-tuned plans during warm-up matches

Each of the 10 sides aiming to secure a spot in the marquee event in Bangladesh – the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2024 – played two warm-up matches on 21 and 23 April.

We take a look at how each team fared ahead of the tournament's start on 25 April.

Group A: Sri Lanka, Thailand, Scotland, Uganda, USA

Coming off a buoyant series away in South Africa, Sri Lanka carried on their rich form in their two outings. Their top-order shone even in the absence of skipper Chamari Athapaththu against the Netherlands, with Vishmi Gunaratne and Hansima Karunaratne both scoring 49. Inoka Ranaweera (2/13) and Kavisha Dilhari (2/9) then delivered with the ball in an easy 63-run win.

Nissan POTD - Three boundaries on the trot by Chamari Athapaththu

Nissan POTD Three boundaries on the trot by Chamari Athapaththu

In the next game, their 15-year-old sensation Shashini Gimhani led the bowling charts with 3/12 as Vanuatu were bowled out for 58 – a total Sri Lanka crossed in 8.2 overs for a nine-wicket win.

Thailand got a good work over despite losing both their warm-up fixtures. In their first match against UAE, captain Naruemol Chaiwai scored a resilient 39, but they could only post 106/7. UAE overhauled that target with relative ease.

Thailand picked up their game in the next encounter against the Netherlands. Suleeporn Laomi’s 3/14 in the first innings held the Dutch to 115 before a plucky batting effort nearly pulled off a win. However, a slide late in the game led to scores being tied – Netherlands kept their calm to win the Super Over.

Scotland came out on the top in their two warm-up fixtures. Against Ireland first up, they comfortably won by eight wickets, with Priyanaz Chaterji and Chloe Abel troubling the Irish batters with their pace. They finished with three wickets apiece, bowling out their opponents for 98. Sarah Bryce’s quickfire 34 ensured an easy win.

Against Zimbabwe in their next outing, attacking fifties from Saskia Horley (82 from 49) and Kathryn Bryce (66 from 34) helped the European side to a strong 197/4. Despite Sharne Mayers’ century, Scotland came through for another good win.

Important middle-order contributions from Anika Kolan (37) and captain Sindhu Sriharsha (32) helped USA to 124/4 in their first warm-up fixture against Zimbabwe. Despite Ritu Singh’s economical 1/10, Zimbabwe overcame the ask with six wickets in hand.

In their next game against Ireland, six USA batters got into double figures but failed to convert them, with the highest score being Disha Dhingra’s 17. Their total of 120 was chased down by Ireland in the 16th over.

Uganda were off to a winning start, defeating Vanuatu in their first game. Rita Musamali’s fighting 35 helped the African side to 119/6. Economical work from Uganda bowlers then kept Vanuatu to a sub-100 total, ensuring a good win for their side.

In the second warm-up against UAE, they faced challenges aplenty as they could only manage 69/9 in their 20 overs while managing to hit only one boundary in their innings. The bowlers struggled in contrast to their first warm-up game. UAE comfortably chased the target in 13.3 overs with nine wickets to spare.

Group B wrap: Ireland, Zimbabwe, Netherlands, UAE, Vanuatu

Laura Delany’s Ireland found the going tough against Scotland. Delany (27) and Orla Prendergast (22) were the only notable contributors in their measly total of 98. Ava Canning’s 1/8 from three overs stood out, but it couldn’t prevent a comfortable win for Scotland.

In their second warm-up against the USA, Eimear Richardson (3/14) and Cara Murray (2/28) shone with the ball after Delany elected to field, restricting USA to 119/6. However, the modest chase wasn't without hiccups, as they were reduced to 4/83 at one point. Enterprising knocks from Amy Hunter (34) and Rebecca Stokell (23*) ensured they had made it through.

Gaby Lewis | Ireland's ace cricketer | 100% Cricket

Zimbabwe had the ideal start to their warm-ups, winning their first clash against USA by six wickets. Lindokuhle Mabhero (2/22), Chipo Mugeri-Tiripano (38) and captain Josephine Nakai Nkomo (38) all contributed to what was a comfortable win.

They lost their following encounter against Scotland, making 165/0 in their chase of 195, but the 31-year-old Sharne Mayers stood out with a morale-boosting century – her 102 came at a strike-rate of 152.23.

The Netherlands lost a tough opening encounter against a strong Sri Lankan team. Eva Lynch was the pick of the bowlers with her 2/32 but the Dutch bowling bore the brunt of Sri Lanka’s aggression, conceding 183/4. Babette De Leede (41) stood out with the bat in the chase, but the Netherlands couldn't get too close to the target, finishing at 120/9.

A modest display with the bat was repeated against Thailand, but the Netherlands’ bowlers fought back in the second innings and secured a tie. The Asian side slipped from 99/5 to 115 all out. In the ensuing Super Over, Thailand’s total of nine was overhauled with ease by Babette and Heather Siegers.

Vanuatu lost both their games against Uganda and Sri Lanka. Their bowlers did well in the first game, restricting the African side to 119/6 as Rachel Andrew (2/19) and Selina Solman (2/22) picked up two wickets each. However, their chase never gathered steam, and they finished at 84/4 in their allotted overs.

In their next encounter against Sri Lanka, they were bowled out for just 58 against heavyweights Sri Lanka, and lost the game by nine wickets.

Esha Oza | ICC Women's Associate Cricketer of the Year 2022

Tournament hosts UAE were off to a confident start with a strong win over Thailand. Heena Hotchandani (2/16), Khushi Sharma (1/19), and Esha Oza (1/14) led their bowling charge and restricted Thailand to 106/7. Oza’s blazing 61* from 42 helped them finish the game with eight wickets to spare.

In their second encounter, UAE continued to impress when they faced Uganda. A collective bowling performance helped them keep Uganda batters under check as they made 69/9. The openers Theertha Satish (26) and Khushi Sharma (37*) made light work of the chase with an opening partnership of 58. The hosts won comprehensively with nine wickets to spare.

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