|Australia 356-5 (50 overs): Healy 170, Haynes 68, shrubsole 3-46|
|England 285 (43.4 overs): Sciver 148 *, Jonassen 3-57, King 3-64|
|Australia won by 61 runs|
Australia have beaten England to win the Women’s World Cup, underlining their status as the planet’s leading international sports team.
The Australians broke the record by adding 50 overs to the Twenty20 World Cup in Christchurch and the Ashes crown they already hold.
Alyssa Healy scored an amazing 170 off 138 balls, the highest score in a women’s or men’s World Cup final. Her 160-run partnership with Rachel Haynes and Australia’s total of 356-5 is also the best women’s final, a record for any team against England.
England, who were huge underdogs to defend the title they won in 2017, will be outraged by the decision to field first in perfect batting conditions. He also dropped Healy and Haynes in the same over.
Faced with such a huge rush, England lost so many regular wickets that it was never debated, but Nat Siver batted with authority for his own century.
Skiver was unbeaten on 146 when England were finally bowled out for 265, with spinners Alana King and Jess Jonasen taking three wickets apiece in Australia’s 61-run victory.
It was a disappointing result for England to reach the final despite losing their first three games of the tournament.
Meanwhile, Great Australia have become world champions for the seventh time with a perfect record of nine wins in nine matches.
Lost the toss?
The suspicion was that England would need everything to get in their way to beat Australia, who had reached the final with just one defeat in their previous 38 ODIs.
As far as England – and Australia – were concerned, Heather Knight seemed to be gifted with the opportunity to bat first.
The defending champions took the opportunity to post a score that put pressure on the Australians, who pointed out the conditions everywhere.
England did not bowl particularly poorly, but missed catches were hammer blows. In the end, Healy was playing some offensive strokes, running at will.
Despite Sciver’s great innings, the competition effectively ended in a gap, with the most dramatic World Cup denying him the final he deserved.
Australia is a worthy winner, setting a gold standard that can take time to match with each women’s team.
Hero Healy led Australia to glory
Opener Healy scored a century in Australia’s semi-final win over the West Indies and got better here, one of the greatest ODI innings of all time.
What made the attack even more significant was a measured start – Australia were bowled out for just 37 off the first 10 overs.
Healy and Haynes, who made 68, started going through the gear just when drops came in the same Kate crossover. Haynes was on 47 when a diving Danny Watt missed a chance at the point, while Healy was on 41 when the ball exploded at the mid-wicket with the hand of Nat Sever.
Hilly’s half-century off 72 balls was an indication of an overdrive. He scored everywhere on the ground, hitting the ball with England from where a fielder was removed. Healy’s second 50 comes from 36 balls, his third from just 29 balls.
After Haynes’ point was mistaken, Beth Mooney reached 62 off 47 balls with 156 runs which was just over 16 overs. Australia took 120 runs in the last 10 overs.
At the time of Healy’s departure, Ania was stumped by Schrabsol, she hit 23 fours and became the first woman to cross 500 runs in a single World Cup.
Inside the Hagley Oval, everyone stood out to thank Australia’s great match winner and tournament best player, Healy.
England’s turnaround ends at the final rate
Reaching this final for England was a significant achievement due to their three opening defeats. One wicket in the loss against New Zealand could knock them out.
They responded with five straight wins and they were relieved as the final began, only to be blown away by the Australians.
Spinner Sophie Ecclestone, the tournament’s main wicket-taker, leaked 71 runs from her 10 overs, while veteran pacer Katherine Brunt gave up 69 runs, while young off-spinner Charlie Dean had a target of 34 from four.
Srabsol, England’s match-winner in the final just five years ago, was saved from a respectable 3-46 genocide.
On such a great pitch, England actually scored faster than Australia, yet only Cyber 27 passed.
Faced with impossible adversity, he scored a lot through the leg side, often skillfully, three figures from 90 balls.
How different could this final be without Cyber in the first innings?