Former England player Isa Guha has hailed the Australian women's team after they broke the world record for most consecutive ODI wins. According to Guha, the current Australian women's team, led by Meg Lanning, would go down in history as one of the greatest ever sides.
Australia defeated New Zealand by six wickets in the first ODI of a three-match series in Mount Maunganui on Sunday. With the victory, Australia registered their 22nd successive win in the format.
Taking to her official Twitter account, Isha Guha compared the current side with the Australian women's and men's teams of the late 90s and early 2000s. She wrote:
“That is incredible! (the world record) We always used to talk about the Australian women's and men's teams of the late 90s and early 2000s, but this Australian women's team will go down as one of the greatest ever if not the greatest!"
The previous record for most consecutive ODI wins was held by the Ricky Ponting-led Australian team that won 21 back-to-back matches in 2003.
Meanwhile, Australia Women were set 213 to win the first ODI. They lost Rachael Haynes for 14 and Lanning for 5. But Alyssa Healy (65) and Ellyse Perry (56 not out) then put on 78 for the third wicket to put the visitors on top.
The White Ferns fought back, dismissing Healy and Beth Mooney (12) in quick succession. Ashleigh Gardner (53 not out from 41) then took Australia to victory in the company of Perry. The duo added an unbroken 79 for the fifth wicket.
Gardner finished off the game with a six, which also brought up her fifty. Megan Schutt was named the 'Player of the Match' for her excellent bowling performance of 4 for 32.
Australia captain Meg Lanning lauds team after record win
Speaking after winning the match, Australia captain Meg Lanning said that the record of 22 consecutive wins was the result of their consistent performances over a period of time. Speaking at the post-match conference, Lanning said:
"It's a great achievement over a long period of time, shows how consistent we've been. Something we'll look back on. That's been a strength of ours, having key pillars throughout the team. We have a mixture of experience and youth. We like to play an aggressive brand of cricket. We don't want to put any handbrakes on.”
New Zealand captain Amy Satterthwaite, meanwhile, admitted that a total of 212 was never going to be enough. She said:
“212 against most teams isn't going to be enough. There's multiple things you have to look, losing wickets in clumps is not ideally. We put a lot of pressure on our middle order to score at a brisk rate. We weathered the storm nicely at the top but probably a bit slow.”
The second ODI of the series will be played in Mount Maunganui on April 7.