So what for the future? Can anybody take the T20 Champions crown off the Aussies? Here are a few ideas for the future for England and the ICC WWT20 competition.
- need to find a fearless T20 opening bat - England's best batsmen are Charlotte Edwards and Sarah Taylor and they know they are. They were both desperate not to get out in the final and against the accurate Aussie attack were not prepared to take risks. The first six overs, while the field is up, is the opportunity to score boundaries, but the batsmen need to feel they have licence to hit through the ball and over the top. I would have given Heather Knight this role and put Taylor at 3.
- need to find a T20 power hitter - England need a power hitter floating in the middle order who can come in as required and muscle the ball around. The problem is that there are not many of them around.
- England need to play more T20 cricket - this is the whole of England and not just the current England squad. The current ECB T20 tournament has only a handful of games.
- Big Bash & IPL - the sooner the better for the England girls - need to pit themselves against the best to improve in this format *fingers crossed*
- combining the men's and the women's tournaments no longer works - the plan is that the 2016 WWT20 will be combined with the men in India; in 2018 it will be a standalone tournament in the West Indies; and then in 2020 it will be combined again in Australia. I hope the ICC review these plans and allow the women's tournament to be a standalone tournament from here on.
If the combined tournaments do go ahead then some changes need to be made:-
- the ICC needs to ensure that the games are broadcast - either television and/or radio or, at least, on the internet.
- playing the women's final before the men's does not work - there were big crowds for the women's group games in Sylhet, but almost no-one for the women's semi-finals and finals, before the men's games, in Mirpur. I'd suggest a men's semis/final day and a separate women's semis/finals day.
- the ICC need to stop treating the women's game as a sideshow - the women's game deserves to be treated with the same respect as the men's, including an increase in the prize money.
Right back to my Women's County Championship Preview..............