Women’s World Cup: Shabnim was incredible in that last over, says Laura Wolvaardt


South Africa batter Laura Wolvaardt praised the efforts of pacer Shabnim Ismail in the match against Pakistan, saying she was incredible in the final over. In their second league match of the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup at Bay Oval, Pakistan needed ten off the final over and Shabnim took out Diana Baig with a sliding catch while running towards mid-wicket in an incredible effort of superb athleticism.

Eventually, Shabnim was named Player of the Match for her figures of three for 41 in 9.5 overs. “Shabnim was incredible in that last over — but it’s typical of her – she’s such a big match player so not surprised that she handled the pressure the way that she did. That catch was incredible to go from a full run-up and bowl that ball to turn around and take an overhead catch. I think overheads are difficult enough as it is so it was really good from her,” said Laura in the post-match virtual press conference.

Laura felt the six-run heist against Pakistan could have been a different winning margin if South Africa hadn’t missed a couple of run-out chances. “I think missing those runouts wasn’t ideal. If we got one or two of them early on, we definitely would have been in a different situation at the end. It was just it was one of those days they were all just missing the stumps and in training yesterday we were hitting most of them. So, it’s just one of those days and I’m glad we could still come away with the win.”

In the match, South Africa made 223/9 in 50 overs with Laura top-scoring with 75 off 91 balls, her knock laced with ten boundaries. Laura, 22, was proud of how the team has been able to keep their nerves in pressure situations.

“We definitely would have liked, I think 20 or 30 more runs with the bat, and we knew that coming off the field. It could possibly get a bit tight at the end there. But I think knowing that we’re not playing our best cricket and still winning tight games is a good thing. I guess if we were playing our best cricket and it was still being this tight then it would actually be worse. So, definitely a big morale booster and hopefully we can make it less tight next time.”

Laura was also surprised over the calm composure shown by captain Sune Luss throughout the match and thinks the ability to remain calm will keep the team in good stead.

“We were actually surprisingly calm given the situation, Sune especially. You don’t even notice that she’s actually on the cricket field. She kind of just looks the same as when she’s off of the cricket field. That’s how like chilled she is. So, I think that just rubs off on everyone at the end of the day. That’s going to be crucial going forward — just remaining calm in those big moments.”



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