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Australia Women cricketers slam Waqar Younis over ‘offensive’ comments

Australia women’s all-rounder Jess Jonassen has come down heavily on Waqar Younis for his ‘misguided and ‘offensive’ remarks about the women’s cricket. The former Pakistan captain had suggested that women’s ODIs be reduced from 50-overs-a-side to 30 overs.

cricket Updated: Jul 04, 2017 16:54 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Australia Women's National Cricket Team,Waqar Younis,ICC Women's World Cup 2017
A few days ago, Waqar Younis tweeted to the ICC that the matches in the Women’s World Cup should be of 30-overs-per-side, reducing 20 overs from each competing side. While he did not elaborate further on his proposal, his tweet proved to be enough to attract ire from others on social media.(Getty Images)

Waqar Younis might have had good intentions when he suggested the International Cricket Council (ICC) to reduce women’s World Cup matches to 30-overs-a-side affair. But it took a controversial turn when his suggestion was panned by several on social media.

Now, Australia Women’s team players Alyssa Healy and Jess Jonassen have joined the South African captain Dane van Niekerk in rubbishing Waqar’s idea.

(Read | Waqar Younis in hot water after his comments on women’s cricket)

Jess has termed Waqar’s suggestion made to the ICC on Twitter as ‘offensive’ and misguided, whereas van Niekerk had used the hashtag ‘#narrowminded’ on her page a few days ago.

Alyssa, who is married to Australia’s pace spearhead Mitchell Starc, had also taken to Twitter making a scathing remark on Waqar’s tweet.

“So what you’re saying is that 530 runs in a 50-over game isn’t entertaining?! With two of the best innings anyone has seen.....” she wrote in her reply, short after the Southern Stars finished a remarkable victory over Sri Lanka in a high-scoring affair.

(Read | ICC Women’s World Cup: Confident India look to carry on momentum vs Sri Lanka)

In that game, Sri Lanka’s Chamari Atapattu smacked 178 to help her side to a commanding total. However, her effort went in vain as Australian Women’s captain Meg Lanning replied with a splendid 152 not out to help her side win.

Waqar had clarified his stand on Twitter, saying “Lesser overs mean faster pace, more audience, competitive cricket, no discrimination or prejudice toward women.”

However, the matter does not seem to be dying down anytime soon. “It’s quite interesting that he said it the day after our match against Sri Lanka that was one of the highest scoring games of the World Cup so far. Five hundred odd runs scored and two of the best innings of the women’s game ever.

“I think [it’s] maybe a little bit misguided. A lot of the Indian men are following it quite closely as well, a lot of the Aussie boys as well back home they’ve sent through messages of support. That’s something that’s really special, and also to be able to increase the profile of women’s cricket globally,” Jess was quoted as saying by the Sydney Morning Herald.

(Read | Pakistan bowler Kainat Imtiaz reveals India’s Jhulan Goswami as her inspiration)

Jess’s timing is interesting, as the Southern Stars are gearing up for their ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 clash against Pakistan.

Pakistan had lost their previous match in a spectacular fashion, being bowled out for a mere 74 in chase of a mere 170 against India Women. Pakistan Women have so far lost all three matches in the ongoing World Cup.

First Published: Jul 04, 2017 16:54 IST