Hayley Matthews, reflecting on her extraordinary performance against Australia, believes that her captaincy role has elevated her game to new heights. Her stunning 132 off 64 balls guided West Indies to a historic T20I chase, following her unbeaten 99 in the previous game, and she even contributed with four wickets.
In partnership with former captain Stafanie Taylor, Matthews orchestrated a remarkable result, amassing 174 runs in just 14 overs. This stellar performance comes after her memorable display in West Indies’ T20 World Cup final victory against Australia in 2016 when she was just 18 years old. Impressively, Matthews has now secured seven consecutive player-of-the-match awards and recently played a pivotal role in the WCPL final.
Expressing her thoughts on the match, she stated,
“Today was quite incredible. I don’t think any days of cricket have beaten that. The leadership of the team has definitely helped me take responsibility for my game, along with my experiences in franchise and T20 cricket on the road over the last 12 months. These factors have not only helped me score runs but also score them consistently.”
Matthews emphasized her commitment to leading by example and mentioned,
“I watched Stafanie do it while playing with her in my younger days. Since I’ve taken over the role, I’ve really tried to emulate that and set a good example for the young girls.”
During the thrilling chase, Matthews and Taylor began to consider the possibility of victory after passing the midway point. Matthews accelerated her scoring and even survived a crucial drop catch on 87. She recalled,
“Steph and I really started to have a look at chasing it when I think we needed 105 from 54 balls.”
Matthews capitalized on her strength through the off-side, exploiting Australia’s bowling lapses. She commented,
“I don’t think they were trying to bowl outside off. That’s always the stronger area for myself, where if I get the ball up there, I’m definitely going to go for it.”
Despite falling just short of taking West Indies over the line, Matthews had full faith in her teammates, Shemaine Campbelle and Chinelle Henry, who held their nerve to secure a memorable victory. She concluded, “I had all faith in Shemaine and Chin. They’re experienced, they’ve been around the circuit for a long time and have been coming into their own of late, so I had no doubt.”