West Indies women 140 for 4 (Matthews 66*, Henry 34) beat Ireland women 137 for 9 (Prendergast 61, Lewis 38, Connell 3-24) by six wickets
Cape Town: West Indies captain Hayley Matthews produced a match-winning knock to carry her side to victory over Ireland in a fascinating game in Cape Town.
After the West Indies bowlers had turned the tide following Orla Prendergast’s half-century to restrict the target to just 138, Matthews played a captain’s innings from the top of the order to steer her team to the target.
The win means that West Indies are still mathematically in contention to qualify for the semi-finals, but a third group-stage loss leaves Ireland with no chance of making it through.
It was Matthews who played the early anchor role when runs were hard to come by in the Powerplay.
The loss of Rashada Williams to an Amy Hunter run-out and Shemaine Campbelle to an lbw off Laura Delany put even more pressure on Matthews.
But the skipper managed the game brilliantly, accelerating through the middle overs and putting together a pivotal partnership with Chinelle Henry.
Henry fell with the target in sight, caught off Leah Paul for 34 (28). But Matthews (66* from 53) carried her team home, keeping her composure in a nervy final over and creaming a beautiful boundary to seal the win with one ball to spare.
Earlier, a brilliant half-century from Prendergast helped Ireland to a decent score of 137/9 after they had won the toss and opted for first crack in Cape Town.
But a flurry of wickets at the back end of the innings saw West Indies stem the flow of runs and give their batters some hope for the chase.
Opener Amy Hunter (1) fell early to Shamilia Connell, but Ireland brought up their 50 without the loss of a further wicket, as Prendergast and Gaby Lewis set a foundation for a decent score.
Prendergast found the boundary with impressive regularity, before eventually falling for 61 (47) – Ireland’s highest individual score at a Women’s T20 World Cup.