Is the Australian women’s team the greatest ever to play the game of cricket?
That was the question posed by England batter Tammy Beaumont after Australia secured a sixth T20 World Cup title – and third in succession – with a 19-run win over South Africa in Sunday’s final in Cape Town.
“You could argue that they’re the greatest cricket team of all time, challenging that great Australian [men’s] team of the 2000s when I was growing up,” Beaumont said. “They just keep on winning.”
Sky Sports’ Nasser Hussain also hailed Australia as the “best side in the world” but was equally pleased to see South Africa put up a fight in front of sizeable, and vocal, home support at Newlands.
“The bigger picture is, that away from the top three [Australia, England, India], you have to grow the game,” Hussain said.
“All you wanted today was that the fans, the young boys and girls in this stadium, go back home and say to mum and dad, ‘I want to play’.”
After Australia’s 13th World Cup win across all formats – they have also won seven 50-over tournaments – Beaumont and Hussain reflected on their enduring success…
Women’s T20 World Cup finals
- 2009 – England beat New Zealand by six wickets
- 2010 – Australia beat New Zealand by three runs
- 2012 – Australia beat England by four runs
- 2014 – Australia beat England by six wickets
- 2016 – West Indies beat Australia by eight wickets
- 2018 – Australia beat England by eight wickets
- 2020 – Australia beat India by 85 runs
- 2023 – Australia beat South Africa by 19 runs
Beaumont: Australia the greatest ever?
England opening batter and Sky Sports pundit Tammy Beaumont…
“Yet again they’ve proven why they’re the best team on the planet.
“You could argue that they’re the greatest cricket team of all time, challenging that great Australian [men’s] team of the 2000s when I was growing up. They just keep on winning.
“They’re an amazing outfit. They keep reinventing themselves and bringing in young players who are performing on the biggest stage.
“They were investing in their players, which is why you see 17, 18 year-olds walking from the Women’s Big Bash League into international cricket.
“Australia are 10 years ahead of everyone else. They had up to 90 professional women’s cricketers 10 years ago and everyone else is playing catch up.
“Hopefully the gap is starting to narrow. You see how England have revolutionised how they play the game, India gave them a scare [in the semi-final] and South Africa are taking them closer.”
Hussain: South Africa put on a show
Former England captain and Sky Sports’ Nasser Hussain…
“I just wanted to make sure that it wasn’t a very one-sided game. When you’ve got this amount of fans in.
“Tammy spoke brilliantly the other day when South Africa got through [the semi-final]. Yes, it was disappointing for England but the bigger picture is, that away from the top three [Australia, England, India], you have to grow the game.
“All you wanted today was that the fans, the young boys and girls in this stadium, to go back home and say to mum and dad, ‘I want to play’.
“If it had been a one-sided game, they might not have done that, but South Africa put on a show.
“Unfortunately for them, they are playing against the greatest women’s cricket team there has ever been. And they’ve shown that again in this tournament.
“It took us three weeks to find out what we already knew – Australia are the best side in the world.
“That’s twice now they’ve hat a hat-trick of T20 World Cup wins. They keep evolving. And any sporting organisation will tell you, if you stay at your level, others will eventually catch up.
“They look incredibly hungry, fit and athletic and will be like this for years to come – but India are well and truly awake now so keep an eye on them as a cricketing nation. They pushed Australia the most in this tournament.”
The next big event in women’s cricket is just days away: the inaugural Women’s Premier League in India. Five teams will compete between March 4 and March 26 – Royal Challengers Bangalore, Delhi Capitals, Mumbai Indians, Gujarat Giants and UP Warriorz – with every game live on Sky Sports Cricket.
The tournament starts on Saturday with the Giants taking on the Indians. England’s Sophia Dunkley is in the Giants’ squad, while her international colleagues Nat Sciver-Brunt and Issy Wong play for the Indians.