Where to watch
Sky Sports Cricket, 1pm Sunday
Ashleigh Gardner to be named player of the match
2pts 15-2 bet365
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Australia v South Africa preview
Australia showed why they are heralded as the most dominant side in world sport, holding their nerve in a semi-final thriller against India to reach the Women’s T20 World Cup final.
Captain Meg Lanning described the five-run success as “one of the best wins” she has been involved in, and given the Aussies’ recent stranglehold over women’s cricket, Lanning has more than a few victories to choose from.
Australia have won seven of the nine ICC tournaments held since 2010, including five of six T20 titles, and also won gold at last summer’s Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
Thursday’s semi-final was by far their sternest test of the tournament and England’s surprise defeat to tournament hosts South Africa in Friday’s second semi only enhances their chances of continuing their unrivalled dominance.
That South Africa have reached the final is a real achievement. They endured a troubled build-up to the tournament, leaving out captain Dane van Niekerk on fitness grounds, and then lost to Sri Lanka in their opening match.
Victories over New Zealand and Bangladesh saw them qualify for the last four on net run-rate but in between those wins they were easily swatted aside by the Aussies.
They are 9-2 to turn the tables at Newlands today with Australia justifiably long odds-on. Australia have so many match-winners in their ranks but a punt is taken on Ashleigh Gardner propelling them to glory with a player-of-the-match performance.
The top-ranked all-rounder in women’s T20s, Gardner has contributed with both bat and ball in Australia’s path to the final and has more opportunity than most to play a match-winning role.
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