The Australian women's cricket team, more commonly known as the Southern Stars, is coming under some sharp criticism from the local press following their shocking loss to England in the third and final T20 match of the Women's Ashes series despite retaining the trophy. The loss though ensured that the English women won the T20 competition 2-1 to tie the Ashes series at eight points apiece which meant that the Australian women kept the title. It was the third time since 2016 however that the Aussie women had failed to win a two-team T20 competition which followed 2-1 home series losses to India and New Zealand last year and a 2-1 home loss to the Kiwis earlier this year.
The sports editorial in the Canberra Times had this to say following the conclusion of the series:
"The Ashes is retained but it was the Englishwomen who were the real victors in the series."
"This has to be the most unconvincing "victory" for the Southern Stars in the history of the women's Ashes. They won the ODI series but couldn't finish England off in the Test match despite dominating for the majority of it. And while it was great to see Ellyse Perry finally score her maiden century in a match in any format which turned out to be a double-century, a victory in the Test would have been a fitting way to clinch the series but unfortunately it was not to be and they had to settle for a draw thanks to some resilient England batting."
It went on:
"But lo! And behold! The dreaded T20 format had to be played and despite winning the first game to retain the Ashes, it was their performances in the other two which should be of major concern to us. While it must be admitted that the English women thoroughly outplayed them in the second game, why is it that they couldn't win this last game despite posting such a formidable total of 178/2 after winning the toss and opting to bat first?"
The Editorial was very critical of the Australian performance as it said:
"Dropped catches and poor fielding that's why. This has to be one of the worst performances in the field for an Aussie women's team ever. Are you telling me that they can't defend 178 in a T20? What has become of the once feared and seemingly invincible Southern Stars? Are they beginning to lose their brightness? Such a result doesn't augur well at all for our women and they would seem hard-pressed now to regain their world title next year in the West Indies. This is the fourth consecutive T20 series they have lost since last year. They have lost to India, twice to New Zealand and now England."
"And just like they have proven earlier this year in the fifty over World Cup, the Three Lionesses have shown in this T20 series that they definitely have an appetite for kangaroo meat."