Beth Mooney Needs Some Runs Under Her Belt And Urgently So!
It is now almost three years since the much-anticipated and as discovered, widely-watched T20 World Cup finals of 2020. The day was Sunday. The date was March 8, 2020.
India were led by ebullient captain Harmanpreet Kaur. On the other hand, the dominant Aussies were led by Meg Lanning.
All eyes were on the big occasion. And all roads led to the MCG; in modern world, it’s considered the Mecca of international cricket.
And it didn’t take long for the focused Australian opener Beth Mooney to truly announce her intentions. Here she was, one of Shepparton’s finest offering to the ballsy world of Australian women’s cricket.
At her peak, she was glowing in confidence and was focused. Her eyes didn’t see a cricket ball that day; they saw in each delivery, a white-coloured object that was to her of the size of a football.
Boundaries were breached with the minor twitch of the forearms. Shots were glazed with a thoroughly effective combination of grace and power.
Beth Mooney was precise. Beth Mooney was magnanimous and a sight to behold.
In what turned out to be one of those severe occasions where both the Australian openers find their way to the fence a bit too regularly, much to the chagrin of the clueless Indians, Beth Mooney emerged unbeaten until the end.
And in what ultimately turned out to be one of the most valiant innings ever crafted to perfection in the big annals of women’s international cricket, the left-hander left little to the imagination.
In firing 78 of her team’s 184 T20 runs in that must win game for both sides, Beth Mooney assured Australia of a domineering position. It’s one to which they stuck like a fly on the wall.
It was all going to go the Aussies’ way.
But what do we see 3 years from that unforgettable MCG evening?
Beth Mooney is here again. But a batting force considered no less important than the fulcrum around which the significant weight of a side revolves, the runs aren’t coming all that much for one of the finest batters around.
What could not have been considered a concern or anything of that sort was Beth Mooney’s duck in the warm-up game versus the Irish women.
But when she scored exactly that; a duck against New Zealand in Australia’s world cup opener, it seemed that something what not alright.
In fact, that faltering against the White Ferns too could have been considered as one of those random days out in the middle but when Mooney departed with just 2 to her name in the contest against the Bangladesh women, some may have considered that probably not all’s well with one of Australia’s finest.
And that’s the main question.
Is Beth Mooney’s form in her control at the moment?
Is this one of the things that happens all the time to some of the finest around or is this some concern?
Whatever it is, conjecture can’t help.
What’s a touch worse is that this is the biggest stage of international women’s cricket, one where her colleagues- Meg Lanning, Alyssa Healy and Ellyse Perry all have runs to their name.
But Mooney doesn’t.
The real underlying concern, however, is that Alyssa Healy, who’s been in spectacular form up until now cannot be expected to carry the weight of run-scoring alone.
She cannot be always expected to offer what she does to her best; give fiery starts to her side and up the tempo of scoring all the time.
What Australia need to find an answer to and quickly before the decisive stages begin is what happens if Healy departs early and fails to inspire the side?
What then, Beth?