Indonesia too Strong for Japan
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The Women’s Japan National Team suffered a second defeat in succession as Indonesia continued their excellent form in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup East Asia Pacific Qualifier 2023 in Vanuatu, winning their fourth match in a row.
Indonesia, ranked 20th in the world to Japan’s 55 and fresh from a Women’s Under 19 World Cup appearance at the start of the year, won the toss and chose to bowl, a decision that was immediately vindicated with early wickets as Japan were reduced to 25 for five in the 11th over.
Kurumi Ota top scored for the second match in a row with 20 from 27 deliveries, before being dismissed in the final over. Her efforts helped push Japan’s total to 66 for seven from the 20 overs, but given the way Indonesia had gone about their batting in the tournament thus far, it did not look enough.
The Japanese opening bowlers started brilliantly, keeping the Indonesia batters extremely quiet with just five runs coming from the opening four overs. Even at the halfway mark the game was still open, especially when Nanda Sakarini fell to Erika Toguchi-Quinn for 21.
As it transpired, that dismissal would be the turning point for Indonesia as Maria Wombaki came in and struck the ball with real power and authority, hitting two maximums in her 10-ball 26* to take Indonesia home by nine wickets with six overs to spare. She made batting look easy in a game where scoring runs had previously been hard work.
The win ends Japan’s hopes of making it to the World Cup Global Qualifier, but the team are going to have a say on who eventually wins the tournament as the final day awaits.
Vanuatu defeated Indonesia in the afternoon, which maintains their 100% record ahead of a double-header against Fiji in the morning and Japan in the afternoon. Indonesia and Papua New Guinea both go into the final day with one loss each and aim to win that contest in the hope that Japan can upset Vanuatu and open the door for either of them to qualify.
Match Schedule (Japan Time):
- Friday 1 September – Cook Islands vs Japan, 07:30
- Saturday 2 September – Japan vs Samoa, 11:30
- Monday 4 September – Fiji vs Japan, 11:30
- Tuesday 5 September – Papua New Guinea vs Japan, 07:30
- Thursday 7 September – Indonesia vs Japan, 07:30
- Friday 8 September – Vanuatu vs Japan, 11:30
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