Australia not to take underdog Ireland lightly

Having moved closer to a semifinal spot with a massive nine-wicket win in their penultimate outing, the Southern Stars would be favourites to notch up another big victory to end their league engagements at the Ferozeshah Kotla stadium.

With no wins so far Ireland has nothing to lose and captain Isobel Joyce has repeatedly spoken about going out with a positive mindset against Australia.   -  AP

A battle of unequals always brings about support for the underdog. The Irish women will be hoping for the same when they face defending champion Australia in their final Group A outing of the World T20 here on Saturday.

An upset, however, is highly unlikely. Having moved closer to a semifinal spot with a massive nine-wicket win in their penultimate outing, the Southern Stars would be favourites to notch up another big victory to end their league engagements at the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium.

Ireland has no wins so far and there would be little for Australia to worry about even though captain Meg Lanning insisted the team would not take any opposition lightly. The team only had an optional practice session on the eve of the game with most of the regulars opting to rest, staying away from the ground where they had thrashed Sri Lanka a day before.

The margin of win may well come into play if South Africa manages to win both its remaining games and as such, Australia would not like to leave anything to chance. Elyse Villani and captain Meg Lanning ended the disappointing outings for Australian top order in the competition with half centuries each and Ellyse Perry is the highest wicket taker in World T20s.

Ireland, on the other hand, has nothing to lose and as such, will be under no pressure. Captain Isobel Joyce has repeatedly spoken about going out with a positive mindset against Australia, which could be its biggest advantage. Other than Isobel herself and experienced leg-spinner Ciara Metcalfe, most of the other Irish players have looked out of depth in the competition and, barring a major collapse, Australia can look to get another foot into the door to semifinals on Saturday.