Phoebe Graham blog: World champions Australia the best women’s team ever and England must learn from them quickly | Cricket News

“Australia’s domestic teams are fully professionally whereas here only six players in a squad of 15 are professional”; Phoebe Graham says Australia are better than any women’s side in the history of the game and that is in no small part down to their domestic structure

Last Updated: 04/04/22 2:06pm


Phoebe Graham says the England team should be proud of their performance at the World Cup, despite their defeat to Australia in the final

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Phoebe Graham says the England team should be proud of their performance at the World Cup, despite their defeat to Australia in the final

Phoebe Graham says the England team should be proud of their performance at the World Cup, despite their defeat to Australia in the final

Phoebe Graham believes Australia’s World Cup winners are the best women’s side in history and says England have a lot of work to do if they are to challenge them in 2025…

Australia are World Cup champions.

They are the best team women’s cricket has ever seen. They’ve been outstanding throughout this tournament, consistently dominating and always in control. The World Cup started six weeks ago, but this journey began in 2017.

India knocked them out of the World Cup semi-final and as a nation, they were not going to let this happen again. Five years later, Australia’s vision has come to life.

Highlights of Australia's comprehensive 71-run win over England as they triumphed at the Women's World Cup

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Highlights of Australia’s comprehensive 71-run win over England as they triumphed at the Women’s World Cup

Highlights of Australia’s comprehensive 71-run win over England as they triumphed at the Women’s World Cup

They are world champions and have the strongest domestic set-up in the world. For England to catch up, we need to learn and learn fast.

It can be painful giving the Aussies the credit they deserve, but hats off to them. Calm, collected and never for a moment unsettled.

Putting them into bat first in this World Cup final was the wrong decision from Heather Knight. When conditions are 50-50, runs on the board in a big game creates pressure. Australia took advantage of the opportunity, scoring the second-highest total ever in women’s ODI cricket, posting 356-5.

Alyssa Healy blitzed 170 from 138 balls in Sunday's final

Alyssa Healy blitzed 170 from 138 balls in Sunday’s final

Alyssa Healy’s innings was outstanding. She is one of the best in the world. She manipulated the field, hit the ball 360 around the ground and most importantly had partners in crime to create partnerships. Beth Mooney and Rachael Haynes accompanied her at the crease remarkably.

For me, there were two match-winning opportunities for England. At 97-0 and in one over from Kate Cross, England dropped both Haynes and Healy. Not winning the big moments was a consistent theme throughout England’s campaign.

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They came back so well after losing three on the bounce, it felt we were peaking at the right time but as a unit, we have been off the mark.

Natalie Sciver’s knock in the England innings was absolutely phenomenal. She provided England with the hope and belief they needed but never had someone able to stay with her and build a telling partnership.

Nat Sciver scored an unbeaten 148 in a losing cause in Christchurch

Nat Sciver scored an unbeaten 148 in a losing cause in Christchurch

Australia are entirely deserving winners of this World Cup.

For England, there were some shining lights. To come back from three defeats on the bounce shows the resilience and strength of mind. Individuals stepped up at different points. We saw Danni Wyatt’s brilliant 129, Ecclestone’s six-for.

The middle over phases of the game with the ball have been outstanding from Charlie Dean, Ecclestone and Cross. But what we missed was a team gelling together as one. We were off the mark in the field, don’t have an established top order and this has been historically England’s super strength.

England can learn a lot from Australia’s journey from 2017 to 2022. They need to put more faith in new talent and continue to invest in their domestic structure. Australia have been professional for eight years compared to England’s two.

Australia celebrate with the trophy after winning the 2022 ICC Women's Cricket World Cup

Australia celebrate with the trophy after winning the 2022 ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup

Australia’s domestic teams are fully professionally whereas here only six players in a squad of 15 are professional. That domestic structure in Australia is creating players that go on and play for their country.

England have a lot of work to reset for the next World Cup campaign. It will not be an easy journey. The world stage is improving. West Indies, South Africa, New Zealand and India are all coming to the forefront and in this World Cup we saw the most competitive group stage.

What will England change and how will they learn to ensure they create a World Cup-winning side in 2025? It’s going to be an interesting journey, but will the Commonwealth Games, The Hundred and Test series this summer, it’s going to be an exciting one.

Well done to Australia and what an honour to write about what has been one of the most competitive World Cups. This is the world stage for women’s cricket and it’s only getting better.


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