NORTH SOUND – Fast bowler Megan Schutt’s final-over hat-trick coupled with opener Alyssa Healy’s dashing half-century underlined another dominant Australia performance as West Indies slumped to an eight-wicket defeat and a 3-0 whitewash in their ICC Women’s Championship series in Antigua on Wednesday.
Entering the contest at the Vivian Richards Cricket Ground with two heavy previous defeats, West Indies could do little to avoid a third straight loss, posting an inadequate 180 all out off exactly 50 overs and then watching as the Aussies romped home in the 32nd over.
Healy extended her rich vein of form with an audacious 61 off 32 deliveries while captain Meg Lanning struck a mature, unbeaten 58 off 70 deliveries and all-rounder Ellyse Perry, 33 not out, to steer Australia over the line.
For Australia, the victory was their 15th straight One-Day International win and fifth successive series without defeat, confirming their status at the top of the standings.
Opting to bat earlier, West Indies got a top score of 40 from Kyshona Knight while Chinelle Henry stroked 39, rookie Sheneta Grimmond 34 and captain Stafanie Taylor, 23.
Schutt, wicket-less at the start of the final over of the innings, then knocked over Henry, Karishma Ramharack (0) and Afy Fletcher (0) with the last three deliveries to celebrate her second hat-trick in international cricket.
Left-arm spinner Jess Jonassen (2-8), off-spinner Ashleigh Gardner (2-23) and leg-spinner Georgia Wareham (2-47) supported with two wickets each.
The hosts lost Reniece Boyce in the second over for one in the second over with as many runs on the board, caught at the wicket flirting at one from seamer Perry that held its line.
Knight, who faced 70 balls and struck seven fours, then anchored two stands to steady the innings, posting 41 for the second wicket with Britney Cooper (16) and a further 31 for the third with Taylor.
Knight’s dismissal in the 27th over, bowled by Jonassen, started a wobble which saw four wickets fall for 31 runs but Henry and Grimmond combined in a resilient 64-run, seventh wicket stand to prop up the innings.
In pursuit of their modest target, Australia were off to a flyer thanks to Healy who blasted 11 fours and a six, in posting 71 off 47 deliveries for the first wicket with Rachael Haynes (19).
Healy, with scores of 122 and 58 from her previous innings in the series, took the attack to the West Indies bowlers with bold strokes on either side of the wicket before slapping off-spinner Taylor to Stacy-Ann King at square cover in the eighth over.
Haynes then put on 26 for the second wicket with Lanning before holing out to long on off leg-spinner Afy Fletcher in the 16th over, and Lanning, who counted seven fours, joined with Perry in an unbroken 85-run, third wicket stand to further deflate West Indies.
The two teams will square off in the first of three T20 Internationals starting Saturday at Kensington Oval in Barbados.
WEST INDIES WOMEN 180 off 50 overs (Kyshona Knight 40, Chinelle Henry 39, Sheneta Grimmond 34, Stafanie Taylor 23; Megan Schutt 3-24, Jess Jonassen 2-8, Ashleigh Gardner 2-23, Georgia Wareham 2-47)
AUSTRALIA WOMEN 182 for two off 31.1 overs (Alyssa Healy 61, Meg Lanning 58 not out, Ellyse Perry 33 not out)