Charlotte Edwards has a chance to become the first player to score 5,000 runs in women’s One-Day International cricket. This is the best the England captain can hope for and another win against New Zealand in the play-off for third place in the ICC Women’s World Cup at the Brabourne Stadium on Friday.
The 33-year-old Charlotte has been part and parcel of England’s World Cup campaign since 1997 when she played the competition’s first match against South Africa at the Lal Bahadur Shastri Stadium, Hyderabad. She has, in all, played 166 ODIs and has scored 4,969 runs.
Charlotte was the captain of the England team that beat New Zealand by four wickets to win the 2009 Cup final at the Sydney Oval, Australia. She acknowledged the progress made by West Indies and Sri Lanka and said it was good for women’s cricket globally. However, England’s failure to make the final distressed her.
“I’m heartbroken. The tempo of the game (against New Zealand on Wednesday) changed and it was disappointing for both teams once we learnt that the West Indies had won (against Australia). But then, I don’t know why I’m surprised about the West Indies win, as this tournament has been full of surprises.
“Once we got over the disappointment halfway through I think it was all about professional performance of the girls. I’m proud of how both teams went on to play and showed a really good display of women’s cricket despite the circumstances,” said Charlotte at the post-match press conference.
She said England was playing at its best on the last three days and hoping to finish on a high against New Zealand.
“We want to end the tournament on a high. We are playing our best cricket now. The games we lost have been close and it’s heartbreaking, but we are a strong lot, full of character, and we will bounce back.”
New Zealand captain Suzie Bates will get another chance to bat and maintain her top position in the highest run-getters’ list in the tournament. “It was disappointing as both teams were going into the game playing for a spot in the final and it would have been easier not to have known that West Indies had won. But both teams were competitive and we stepped up to the mark and ultimately finished the day with a good game of cricket.”
She also felt that teams cannot complain about the format of the competition. “I think the Super Six gives teams everything to play for as the pool games count towards points for this stage (Super six) and that means every game is crucial.
“It’s actually a better format than if you had a semifinal style where a team could potentially have one poor performance which means they lose out on the whole tournament even if they’ve done well in the group stage.”