Heather Knight has complained that England were robbed of their chance to reach the T20 World Cup final.
England were farcically dumped out of the tournament yesterday after their semi-final with India was washed out – following torrential rain in Sydney.
Instead of the ICC factoring in autumnal storms and booking in a reserve day, the 2009 winners were forced to exit due to their second-place finish in the group stage.
Skipper Knight was philosophical, after she had resigned to the deluge, but felt the dream to play in front of 90,000 and Katy Perry at the MCG was stolen from her team.
“There was no chance of us getting out there,” Knight bemoaned. “The weather’s cost us. It’s sad for the tournament.
“We didn’t have a chance to fight for a place in that final. We had that chance taken away from us. There was not a lot we could do.
“You put in a lot of hard work, you want to have the chance to showcase your skills and show you can perform on the biggest stage, in knockout games in World Cups.”
Stuart Broad added on Instagram : “Why no reserve day ICC? Seems sensible.” The comment was accompanied by another which included two thumb downs.
Opener Danni Wyatt simply tweeted: “Gutted.”
Australia, who were in the same boat as England, had made a last-minute plea with the ICC to add in a reserve day.
But were quickly told that it “would have extended the length of the event, which is not feasible” – with the final on Sunday.
Cricket’s rule-makers will now have to decide whether to make a U-turn and schedule reserve days for the men’s T20 World Cup later this year, with none currently on the calendar.
Knight is hopeful the ICC have taken note and her side are the last to fall foul of the red tape. She said “It’s the rules everyone signed up to.
“You hope now there’s going to be a rule change moving forward.
“We had a quick turnaround in our last World Cup and if it meant we were going to play we wouldn’t have an issue with it. But those are the rules unfortunately and there was no sort of room for wiggle.”
England effectively couldn’t qualify for the showpiece event at the MCG after their opening-round loss to South Africa.
A result Knight deeply regrets: “We lost that first game against South Africa which ultimately cost us.
“We’ll have to rue that first game and move on. It’s going to be a bitter pill to swallow for a few of us a while.”
The rain eased around 90 minutes too late for England, but it abated perfectly to allow hosts Australia to join India in the final.
Aussie skipper Meg Lanning thumped an unbeaten 49, before the bowlers closed out a five-run victory over South Africa, by DLS method.
Lanning said: “It’s been raining a hell of a lot in Sydney so we were very thankful we were able to play.”