AGAINST all the odds, the West Indies women cricketers have made it to the final of the International Cricket Council's Women's World Cup 2013 in India. While the regional men's team did not exactly cover itself in glory on the recent tour of Australia, losing all five one-day internationals before regrouping to win the lone Twenty20 international, the women outdid themselves by progressing through the group stages and Super Sixes to take their place in tomorrow's grand final in Mumbai.
After starting shakily, losing to the hosts in their opening Group A encounter, the Windies girls rallied in their next outing, posting the tournament's highest scoreó368 for eight off their 50 oversóbefore bowling out Sri Lanka for 159.
They then suffered a six-wicket defeat to England in their third group game, but still scraped into the next round of the prestigious competition and that is where captain Merissa Aguilleira and her teammates raised their performance level, winning all three Super Six matches, against South Africa, New Zealand and then Australia.
That was the coup de grace and confirmed the potential of the Windies women for they had never before beaten the mighty Australians, five-time winners of the Women's World Cup.
"We understand how important these matches were in light of making sure that we get through to the final and we went out there with a plan," said skipper Aguilleira after shocking the Aussies, getting the better of their opponents by just eight runs.
"The plan was to make sure and win all three matches and that is exactly what we did in order to go into the finals, so accomplishing such is really great for us as a team, knowing that they are a higher ranked team than us," she added.
Now Ms Aguilleira and her charges will take the field at 5 a.m. (T&T time) on Sunday playing for all the marbles and attempting to emulate their male counterparts from the West Indies who captured the first two editions of the ICC World Cup, in 1975 and '79.
And the captain is looking forward to all the pieces falling into place and every member of the team bringing their best to the biggest game of their lives.
"Since we have been in the World Cup we have not brought on our 'A' game, so I guess this is a great opportunity for us to really go out there and showcase what we can really do as a team and as a batting unit," she said.
And the West Indies women have been inspired by the men clinching the World T20 crown last year and are eager to bring more glory to the Caribbean.
"We have a few days to think about and to search and to see everything that we can do within those few days to get everything in order for the final day," said the captain on Wednesday.
"That has always been a highlight for us to know that we can bring it back home, not just for ourselves but for the people of the Caribbean as well."
And we wish them all the best tomorrow.