Proteas have earned more support for women’s cricket, says captain Luus

Proteas captain Sune Luus and teammates acknowledge the crowd at Newlands after the T20 World Cup final. PHOTO: Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images

With the Proteas having made a significant breakthrough by reaching the T20 World Cup final at the weekend, national captain Sune Luus hopes the government and sports administrators will provide more support to raise the profile of women’s cricket.

The SA team competed in a World Cup final for the first time, and while they lost to Australia in the trophy battle in front of a packed crowd at Newlands, Luus felt the players had done enough to show their potential after raising interest around the country with their performances on the field.

“We’ve done our best to give girls in this country the best possible chance. Obviously we would have liked to have won (the final) but I don’t think we could have given it a better shot,” Luus said.

“Now it’s up to Cricket South Africa and the minister of sport, and whoever’s in charge of cricket in this country, to knock on doors and open them, and give women’s cricket the best chance we can have to keep up with teams like Australia, England and India.”

Big step forward
Despite losing by 19 runs to a powerhouse Australia side, who earned their third straight T20 world title, Luus was full of praise for her squad.

And having experienced the pressure-filled cauldron at that level of the game, she believed they could perform even better at next year’s T20 World Cup in Bangladesh.

“We got a sniff of how a final is, with the feelings and the nerves… and obviously we got through the hurdle of the semifinal, so I think at next year’s World Cup it’s not going to be a big thing for us anymore to break that curse,” the skipper said.

“I think now it’s just for us to really look at the final and think of how we’re going to get through it and be on the other side of that.

“This was a massive opportunity for our girls and I think they did extremely well and we gave Australia a good run for their money… so I think overall it was obviously not the result we wanted but we just have positive feelings of excitement and pride.”

Wesley Botton/The Citizen