Beaumont – England are raring to go
Beaumont – England are raring to go

Kent captain Tammy Beaumont says England can’t wait to get going ahead of Thursday’s ICC Women’s World T20 against India.

The two sides will meet at 8pm local time at the Sir Viv Richards stadium in Antigua (12am GMT, Friday November 22) with a win securing passage to a second World Cup final in just over a year, this time round against Australia or hosts West Indies.

“We’re really excited about India, and about playing in a World Cup semi-final,” she explained. “At one point when we were in Saint Lucia we weren’t sure if we were going to play any cricket at all because of the rain so it feels a bit of a bonus to have made it through.”

A loss against the West Indies in England’s final group game saw Beaumont and her side finish second in the group stage and led some to question the side’s batting. But for Beaumont there’s no reason for her and her fellow batters to not be confident.

“We have played some really good cricket but I think there’s more to come from us. We’ve only had one chance to bat first and we maybe haven’t scored the weight of runs yet that we would have liked to but that also means we’ve got a chance to go out there and really nail it with the bat.

“We’ve got so many talented batters – we chased down 200 against India in April – we just need it to click on the day or for someone to come off and go big.”

The other semi-final sees Australia take on West Indies and there have been suggestions that England’s route to the final is potentially the simpler one, but that’s a suggestion Beaumont refutes.

“I don’t think you can say that at all. It will be a very difficult match,” she said.

“India are a side we know really well. We played them in a tri-series in April and we know how dangerous they can be. Their bowlers are very effective and they’ve been one of the most in-form teams in this tournament.

“You look at someone like Harmanpreet Kaur and you know you’ve got a player who’s seriously dangerous. And then there’s Smriti Mandhana who obviously had a fantastic Kia Super League. They’re big wickets, we know that, and we want to be ready for them.”

The Kent and Southern Vipers opener will be one of nine players in the squad with experience of winning the ICC Women’s World Cup at Lord’s in 2017, but alongside them will be three new faces who have so far relished their first taste of the global stage.

Sophia Dunkley, Kirstie Gordon and Linsey Smith were uncapped before this World T20 but each of them have impressed at various stages in the West Indies. Beaumont thinks their attitude is one that can be embraced by everyone on Thursday.

“I’ve been so impressed by the three new faces. Sophia was brilliant in our last time and Kirstie has probably been our most threatening bowler. Linsey’s chipped in really well as well and what’s great is that we know they’ve got the attitude now to stand up and deliver when the pressure’s on.

“The semi will be a massive game so it’s important we all know how to step up when the heat is on, keep our composure and do our jobs.”