Tahlia McGrath averages 169.5 with the bat and 11 with the ball – Michmutters

Tahlia McGrath averages 169.5 with the bat and 11 with the ball

“I started my international career and was probably pigeonholed as a 50-over player purely because my strike rate wasn’t near where it needed to be,” McGrath said. “That was a massive focus for me. to be [striking] at 150, I don’t know how long I’ll keep it there, but I’ll try my best.”

Under blue skies at Edgbaston, McGrath and Beth Mooney (70 not out from 49 balls) helped Australia recover from 2-19, after the early wickets of Alyssa Healy (4) and Meg Lanning (4), by plundering an unbeaten 141-run booth.

It was the highest third-wicket partnership ever by the Australians in T20s, eclipsing McGrath and Lanning’s 135-run stand last month against Ireland. The 141-run partnership was also the fourth-highest ever, for any wicket, by Australia in the shortest format.

McGrath and Mooney used their crease cleverly and showed brute force square of the wicket as Pakistan’s bowlers struggled to stem the flow of runs on a quick outfield. Australia scored 102 runs from their final 10 overs.

In response, Pakistan lost two wickets inside two overs and didn’t recover. They were 8-116 at the end of their 20 overs, with McGrath snaring 3-13 from three overs to bring her career average down from an already brilliant 13.85 to 11 on the dot.

Omaima Sohail is bowled by Alana King.

Omaima Sohail is bowled by Alana King.Credit:Getty

“The game can be taken away from you like we saw today with Tahlia coming in,” Mooney said. “She played an unbelievable innings. She seems really clear on her role in the team.”

The win was Australia’s third in a row, but it’ll mean nothing without another A-grade performance on Saturday.

“Moving into finals all the work we’ve done in the round games is irrelevant,” McGrath said. “Everyone starts from scratch. It’s knockout. In saying that, we take a lot of confidence and momentum.”

Mooney added: “Pressure is a bit of a privilege in my eyes. There’s certainly no amount of pressure that’s more than what we put on ourselves to perform day in and day out.

“The challenge that awaits us is really exciting. Semi-finals are sometimes harder than finals. You have to be on your game from ball one.

“You want a spot in that gold medal match. We know on our best day we can beat anyone.”

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