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CARIBBEAN - WI Girls Back From Asia

Wednesday 07, April-2004

The West Indies women’s cricketers are back home from their seven-week Asian tour during which they were beaten by highly rated India but won against Pakistan.
The players returned to the Caribbean on Sunday and coach Ann Browne-John believes they met the tour objectives – preparing for the 2005 Women’s World Cup in South Africa.

“The tour has been very good for us and very good for our preparation for the World Cup,” Browne-John told CMC Sport.

Against India, the West Indies women were outplayed and lost 5-0 in their limited overs series, confirming that the Caribbean side is outside the range of the world’s best teams.

“I thought that we were way behind India and when I think about the fact that India is now ranked third in the world, that means we are also way behind Australia and Zealand, so we have some catching up to do,” Browne-John said.

But the Trinidadian coach is encouraged by the know-how her side gained from facing the Indians, before going on to defeat Pakistan 5-2 in their seven-match series.

“Even the Indian officials said to me that we improved with every game that we played against them. So I think the girls looked at India and they were able to learn something from them and improve on their game and then I was able to see them put it into effect in Pakistan.

“That was the purpose of the tour, to gain international experience to play against an experienced team like India and to hope that it will help us and I think we have been able to achieve that,” Browne-John said.

A highlight of the tour was a rare Test match experience for the Caribbean girls, who staged a strong second innings batting performance to draw with Pakistan.

Behind a world record 242 from Kiran Baluch, Pakistan piled up 426 for seven declared and then bowled out the West Indies for 147.

But the left-handed St Lucian Nadine George hit 118, the first West Indies century-maker in Women’s Test cricket, as the Caribbean side gathered 440 runs in their second innings to avoid defeat.

The West Indies women qualified for the World Cup when they finished runners-up to Ireland at the World Cup qualifying series in Holland last year. (CMC)

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