Women’s T20 World Cup 2020: 5 players to watch in the semi-finals

After 12 eventful days featuring exciting contests, the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2020 has finally reached its business end. India, England, South Africa and Australia Women have been confirmed as the four semi-finalists of the tournament that began on February 21 in Australia.

Semi-final schedule:

March 05 2020, Sydney (SCG)

Semi-final 1 – India Women vs England Women (09:30 AM IST)

Semi-final 2 – South Africa Women vs Australia Women (1:30 PM IST)

4 strong teams. 2 juicy encounters. Here are 5 players who can make an impact:

Harmanpreet Kaur (India)

2, 8, 1, 15. No, this isn’t some cryptic password but a string of low scores from the bat of India’s captain, Harmanpreet Kaur While the poor starts aren’t a true reflection of her potential, they are certainly putting pressure on India’s middle order.

In the dashing Shafali Verma and dependable Smriti Mandhana, India have a solid opening combination, followed by the bubbly Jemimah Rodrigues at No.3. It’s time for the law of averages catches up with the Indian skipper who is struggling with a loss of form. If India are to make it to their fourth T20 World Cup semi-final, a Harmanpreet special will definitely help.

Poonam Yadav (India)

Playing in her second consecutive T20 World Cup and third overall, this pocket dynamite has been running riot down under with her deceptive googlies. Poonam Yadav is the only frontline bowler to have featured in every T20I match for India since 2018. Yadav has scalped 9 wickets in 4 matches so far, making her the leading wicket-taker of the tournament. Her purple patch is a huge boost to the Indian bowling attack.

Poonam Yadav

Danni Wyatt (England)

With 109 T20Is in her kitty, Danni Wyatt is a veteran of sorts in England’s T20 scheme of things. But the all-rounder-turned-top-order batsman started off slowly in the first two matches, including scores of 2 and o. But in the last couple of games, Wyatt has been coming into her own with better starts (16 off 13 vs Pakistan, 29 off 27 vs West Indies). Her record against India is particularly impressive – 333 runs in 16 T20Is at an average of 30.27 (2010-2020). With England slated to face India in the semi-final, this could be Wyatt’s time to shine.

Beth Mooney (Australia)

With consecutive half-centuries (81 & 60) in the last two matches, Australia opener Beth Mooney has stepped up to support her partner at the top after a slow beginning. Both Alyssa Healy and Mooney will now have the additional responsibility of getting Australia big starts, especially in the absence of the injured Ellyse Perry.

Shabnim Ismail (South Africa)

By the end of the 2016 Women’s T20 World Cup, right-arm fast bowler Shabnim Ismail became South Africa Women’s leading wicket-taker across the ODI and T20I formats. She is also one of the few players to have featured in every T20 World Cup for her country since its inaugural edition in 2009. In the 2018 T20 World Cup, she finished as South Africa’s joint-highest wicket-taker with 6 wickets in 4 matches. The combination of her wicket-taking abilities and economical spells makes Ismail a potent force in the Proteas pace attack.