Wisden’s Women’s T20 World Cup 2023 Under-22 Team of the Tournament
With plenty of young stars on display in the 2023 women’s T20 World Cup, here is Wisden’s U22 Team of the Tournament.
Seven nations are represented in this XI, with two players from each of Ireland, England, India and Pakistan. Australia, New Zealand and South Africa also have single entries on the list.
Only those aged 22 years and younger have been considered for selection in this side, while four of those selected are still in their teens.
4 matches, 116 runs at 38.66, SR: 104.50, HS: 38
Gaby Lewis continues to set the standard for Ireland at the top of the order. Although still only 21 years old, Lewis has played almost 100 international matches for Ireland and helped the side to continue their progress in ICC tournaments at this World Cup. It was Ireland’s strongest showing at the World Cup yet as they came so close to forcing an upset over India, losing by five runs on the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method after putting England under pressure in a four-wicket defeat the week before. Lewis was the rock for the Irish batting order in both those matches, upping the tempo while ensuring she stayed there long enough to keep her side in the game.
4 matches, 113 runs at 28.25, SR: 109.70, HS: 66
6 wickets at 11.33, ER: 6.18, BBI: 3-18
Another of those with plentiful experience for her age, Amelia Kerr had arguably her best T20 World Cup ever with both bat and ball. She scored her first T20I fifty in her final innings against Sri Lanka, hitting six boundaries after coming in at No.3. She was also more than useful with the ball, taking three big wickets in New Zealand’s opening match against Australia and bowling with a decent economy rate throughout the tournament.
5 matches, 73 runs at 14.60, SR: 152.08, HS: 51
England’s most exciting young talent showed a flash of brilliance during the tournament when she struck the fastest-ever fifty in women’s T20Is for England. She thrashed 51 off 22 balls against Ireland including 11 boundaries, a remarkable achievement considering she underwent surgery to repair a broken collarbone as recently as December last year. While Capsey only scored 22 runs in four games outside of her half-century against Ireland, that in itself is achievement enough to warrant a place in this XI.
5 matches, 129 runs at 32.25, SR: 135.78, HS: 53*
Jemimah Rodrigues carried on her outstanding recent form in T20Is. She struck an unbeaten 53 from 38 balls in India’s tournament opener against Pakistan and came close to helping India overcome Australia in their semi-final defeat.
2 matches, 49 runs at 49.00, SR 181.48, HS: 43*
Although she picked up an injury which ruled her out of the tournament after two matches, Ayesha Naseem finds a place in this XI. This is largely thanks to her brilliant unbeaten 43 against India in Cape Town. Her innings came off just 25 balls and included two sixes as she propelled Pakistan to a score they could have almost defended.
5 matches, 136 runs at 68.00, SR: 130.76, HS: 47*
Richa Ghosh is the only player in this XI who also earned a spot in Wisden’s senior team of the 2023 women’s T20 World Cup. Having also been a part of India’s U19 World Cup victory, it’s been a breakthrough few months for the teenager in international cricket. She is part of a core group of the next generation of stars for women’s cricket in India.
4 matches, 109 runs at 27.25, SR: 125.28, HS: 61
3 wickets at 26.00, ER: 6.00, BBI: 2-22
Arguably the stand-out all-rounder of the tournament, Orla Prendergast’s classy innings against the West Indies in Cape Town showed her at her best. An attacking No.3 for Ireland, she was also brilliant with the ball in hand. Bowling in the powerplay, she has a knack for picking up important wickets whilst being able to control the strike rate. At an exciting time for women’s cricket in Ireland, Prendergast is a huge part of their potential progression over the next few years.
4 matches, 4 wickets at 28.75, ER: 9.58, BBI: 2-44
Pakistan’s seam-bowling all-rounder had a good tournament with the ball. Fatima Sana only failed to take a wicket in Pakistan’s opening match against India. Arguably her best performance came against the West Indies where she took 1-10 in a tight, low-scoring game in which West Indies just got over the line. She also bagged the early wicket of Sophia Dunkley in Pakistan’s final group-stage clash against England.
6 matches, 6 wickets at 24.16, ER: 6.59, BBI: 3-10
Nonkululeko Mlaba was a key part of South Africa’s turnaround in the tournament. After they were beaten by Sri Lanka in the opening game of the tournament, she took 3-10 against New Zealand in an emphatic victory, dismissing both openers for ducks. Bowling in an impressive South Africa bowling attack, her left-arm spin was a dependable source of wickets in a historic campaign.
4 matches, 3 wickets at 26.66, ER: 6.00, BBI: 1-22
Having made her debut for England last year, Lauren Bell continued her impressive run in her early career at her first ICC tournament. She found prodigious swing in the powerplay and while she struggled with accuracy at times, she proved herself more than a handful. Bell was England’s best seamer throughout the tournament, using her height to her advantage on the slow South Africa wickets. She took the key wicket of Shafali Verma in England’s win over India but struggled in the semi-final against South Africa.
6 matches, 7 wickets at 15.00, ER: 5.00, BBI: 2-18
Aged just 19, Darcie Brown already has two World Cup winners medals to her name. She was vital for Australia in the knockout stages of the tournament, taking 2-18 against India and then 1-25 in the final. Her economy rate of exactly five was only bettered by Sophie Ecclestone and Karishma Ramharack among those who bowled more than ten overs in the tournament.