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Women’s T20WC Qualifier Group B Preview: Four teams eye maiden T20 World Cup appearance

Ireland, Netherlands, UAE, Vanuatu, and Zimbabwe will compete in Group B of the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2024 Global Qualifiers.

With two ICC Women’s T20 World Cup spots up for grabs, ten teams will compete in the Global Qualifiers, starting on 25 April in UAE in two groups of five teams each.

The top two from each group will enter the semi-finals with the finalists confirming their trip to Bangladesh later this year for the marquee tournament.

Group B presents a chance for each team (except Ireland) to make their first Women’s T20 World Cup appearance with all eyes on UAE who look to maximise home advantage.

Fixtures

Thursday, 25 April

- Ireland vs UAE at Zayed Cricket Stadium

- Zimbabwe vs Vanuatu at Zayed Cricket Stadium

Saturday, 27 April

- Vanuatu vs Netherlands at Tolerance Oval

- UAE vs Zimbabwe at Tolerance Oval

Monday, 29 April

 Ireland vs Zimbabwe at Zayed Cricket Stadium

- Netherlands vs UAE at Zayed Cricket Stadium

Wednesday, 1 May

- Zimbabwe vs Netherlands at Tolerance Oval

- Vanuatu vs Ireland at Zayed Cricket Stadium

Friday, 3 May

- UAE vs Vanuatu at Zayed Cricket Stadium

- Netherlands vs Ireland at Zayed Cricket Stadium

Best of Orla Prendergast | Women's T20WC 2023

Squads

Netherlands Women: Heather Siegers (c), Babette de Leede, Carlijn van Koolwijk, Caroline de Lange, Eva Lynch, Frédérique Overdijk, Hannah Landheer, Iris Zwilling, Jolien van Vliet, Merel Dekeling, Phebe Molkenboer, Robine Rijke, Sanya Khurana, Silver Siegers, Sterre Kalis. Reserves: Myrthe van den Raad (travelling), Annemijn Thomson, Isabel van der Woning, Mikkie Zwilling

Ireland Women: Laura Delany (c), Ava Canning, Alana Dalzell, Georgina Dempsey, Amy Hunter, Arlene Kelly, Gaby Lewis, Louise Little, Joanna Loughran, Jane Maguire, Cara Murray, Leah Paul, Orla Prendergast, Eimear Richardson, Rebecca Stokell

Vanuatu Women: Selina Solman (c), Rachel Andrew, Maiyllisse Carlot, Alvina Chilia, Gillian Chilia, Leimauri Chilia, Lissing Enock, Natalia Kakor, Valenta Langiatu, Vicky Mansale, Nasimana Navaika, Raylin Ova, Susan Stephen, Mahina Tarimiala, Vanessa Vira

UAE Women: Esha Oza (c), Samaira Dharnidharka, Kavisha Egodage, Siya Gokhale, Heena Hotchandhani, Al Maseera Jahangir, Lavanya Keny, Suraksha Kotte, Vaishnave Mahesh, Indhuja Nandakumar, Avanee Patil, Rinitha Rajith, Theertha Satish, Khushi Sharma, Mehak Thakur

Zimbabwe Women: Mary-Anne Musonda (captain), Josephine Nkomo, Kelis Ndhlovu, Sharne Mayers, Modester Mupachikwa, Chipo Mugeri-Tiripano, Chiyedza Dhururu, Loreen Tshuma, Audrey Mazvishaya, Nomvelo Sibanda, Precious Marange, Pellagia Mujaji, Lindokuhle Mabhera, Francisca Chipare, Ashley Ndiraya

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

Player to watch out for

Gaby Lewis (Ireland): Inspired by AB de Villiers, Lewis has made headlines for her aggressive batting at the top just like her role model with the ability to hit sixes at will.

At 21, Lewis became the youngest player to captain the Ireland Women's team in an international match. The opening batter also holds the record for scoring the first century in women's T20Is for Ireland.

Esha Oza (UAE): The 2022 ICC Women's Associate Cricketer of the Year, Esha is one of the most seasoned players amongst Associate Members. The UAE skipper has scored 1,885 runs and taken 50 wickets in 74 T20Is.

She has three centuries in the format, achieving a top score of 158 not out against Bahrain. As a bowler, Oza has maintained a remarkable economy rate of 4.62, picking wickets at an average of 15.18.

Sterre Kalis (Netherlands): Kalis is a standout top-order batter for the Netherlands team. In 30 T20Is, she has accumulated 973 runs at a commendable average of 37.42. Kalis has also smashed a century and five half-centuries in the format.

In 2023, the 24-year-old scored 176 runs across four matches, averaging 88 and maintaining a strike rate of 113.54. Kalis will aim to play a significant role in the Netherlands' quest for one of the two qualification spots in Abu Dhabi.

Rachel Andrew (Vanuatu): Andrew has played a crucial role in the Vanuatu line-up and was instrumental in their qualification for the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Qualifier.

In T20 Internationals, the all-rounder has scored 781 runs across 36 matches and taken 37 wickets at an average of 12.27 runs per wicket.

Kelis Ndhlovu (Zimbabwe): Zimbabwean teenager, Kelis Ndhlovu, has already become one of the established performers of her side. The 18-year-old all-rounder rose to prominence in the inaugural ICC Women’s U19 T20 World Cup 2023, where she captained her side. In 35 T20Is, the left-handed batter has scored two fifties and scored 601 runs.

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

What to expect from Group B teams?

Ireland enter as the favourites to progress from Group B being the only team to have competed at the T20 World Cup before. Currently ranked 10th in the ICC Women’s T20I Rankings, Ireland possess the quality and experience to finish as the finalists of the Global Qualifier.

The hosts UAE will be hoping to make the most of their knowledge of their home conditions. They have beaten the Netherlands once and are only one spot behind them in the current rankings (16th). The UAE demonstrated their strength at the Asia Qualifier and the ACC Women's Premier Cup, defeating Thailand en route to winning both tournaments.

The Netherlands secured five wins in six matches at the Europe Qualifier with their only loss coming against Scotland.

Vanuatu, appearing in the Qualifier for the first time, are the least experienced side in the competition. They secured the lone East Asia Pacific spot to reach the Qualifiers. Vanuatu are yet to play a T20I against any of their group adversaries and their current ranking of 30th makes them the lowest-ranked team in the event.

One of the two African teams to compete in the Qualifier, Zimbabwe, were impressive in Africa qualifying, undefeated in their campaign which included a comfortable win over Namibia to secure qualification and a relatively simple chase over tournament hosts Uganda.

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