Hayley Matthews says T20 win a confidence boost for West Indies ahead of ICC Women's World Cup
By Dev Trehan
Last Updated: 16/05/17 5:37pm
West Indies all-rounder Hayley Matthews is looking forward to renewing acquaintances with Australia at this summer's ICC Women's Cricket World Cup.
Matthews put Australia to the sword at last year's Women's World T20, sharing a 120-run opening wicket partnership with skipper Stafanie Taylor as West Indies chased down 149 to lift the trophy at Eden Gardens, Kolkata.
West Indies play the Southern Stars in their World Cup opener at Taunton on June 26 and Matthews hopes they can build on their T20 success in the 50-over format of the game.
"Playing Australia is a good way to start our World Cup," Matthews told Sky Sports.
"We should be going into it with lots of confidence coming off our World T20 win. This is obviously a different format for us, and we don't tend to do as well in it, but we're hoping we can show our improvement."
Matthews is acutely aware of the quality Australia have in their ranks. The 19-year-old played domestic cricket in Australia for Tasmania Roar last year and has turned out for Hobart Hurricanes in the last two editions of the Women's Big Bash League.
The Barbadian acknowledges the Southern Stars are one of the favourites for this year's tournament but insists Australia will face stiff competition to lift the trophy as they chase an unprecedented seventh World Cup triumph.
"I think every team going to England this summer will be going there and looking to win," she said.
"You don't want to go into any tournament with any less of a goal, especially when it is a World Cup.
"We want to win the tournament but we know it's going to be really hard. All of the teams are so competitive this year. Australia and England are looking really good and India are doing really well at the moment.
"We have a lot of teams to look out for if we want to win it and we know to do that we are going to have to play some really good cricket."
The West Indies play at all four tournament venues during the World Cup group stages, but after sampling the atmosphere at Eden Gardens last year, Matthews has her sights set on taking to the field in the final at Lord's.
"Everyone knows that Lord's is the home of cricket," she added.
"It would be amazing to get there and amazing to be in the final at such an iconic venue. It would be a real honour to play in the final there if we do reach the final."