The Women’s T20 World Cup 2023 began on a thrilling note with Sri Lanka’s narrow three run-win over hosts South Africa on the first day of the tournament.
Sri Lanka set a target of 129/4 at the end of 20 overs, which the bowlers managed to defend under challenging circumstances.
Proteas pacer Nadine de Klerk bagged the first wicket of the competition with Sri Lankan batter Harshitha Samarawickrama’s dismissal, which also flagged off the race for the most wickets in ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023.
Australia spinner Ashleigh Gardner became the first player in the 2023 edition to register a five-wicket haul, while also recording her career-best figures in T20 cricket.
In their opening fixture against New Zealand, Gardner helped her team defend 173 with ease. She received the Player of the Match for her lethal bowling performance.
Moreover, 5/12 is also the best bowling figures by an Aussie cricketer in T20 World Cup history.
Ashleigh Gardner bowls her way into the #T20WorldCup history books! #AUSvNZ pic.twitter.com/2KSe26mzB8— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) February 11, 2023
Gardner was well supported by her teammate Megan Schutt, who finished as the leading wicket-taker in the previous edition, amassing 13 scalps from six matches.
Schutt, who also features in the list of most wickets in Women’s T20 World Cup history, got the second innings underway by dismissing both the White Ferns’ openers Suzie Bates and Sophie Devine for a first-ball duck.
However, England’s Sophie Ecclestone finished with the most wickets in the ICC Women's T20 World Cup 2023 with 11 scalps.
Among other players, Oshadi Ranasinghe of Sri Lanka, New Zealand duo Amelia Kerr and Lea Tahuhu alongside Indians Deepti Sharma and Renuka Singh were also strong contenders to clinch the laurel for most wickets in Women's T20 World Cup 2023.
Most wickets in ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023
|Marizanne Kapp||South Africa||6||9|
|Lea Tahuhu||New Zealand||4||8|
|Shabnim Ismail||South Africa||6||8|
|Ayabonga Khaka||South Africa||4||7|
|Renuka Singh Thakur||India||4||7|
|Amelia Kerr||New Zealand||4||6|
|Eden Carson||New Zealand||4||6|
Photo credit: Alamy