Dhaka, Bangladesh – West Indies made a sensational start to the International Cricket Council’s Women’s World Cup 2013 qualifiers with a whopping 213-run victory over Ireland on Monday.

Led by a record opening stand of 204 in 37.3 overs between Stafanie Taylor and Juliana Nero, Windies amassed 276-4 off their 50 overs at the Krira Shikkha Protisthan Number 3 Ground.

They then shot out the Irish for a mere 63 off 30.1 overs to record one of the biggest wins in West Indies history. Seamer Pearl Etienne was the best bowler with a career-best 3-16 and also had a direct hit for a run out, while left-arm spinner Shanel Daley and left-arm seamer Stacy Ann King both took two wickets.

Taylor, the 20-year-old Jamaican, continued her dominance of the women’s game with a mature 107 off 154 balls with nine fours and a six. It was her third ODI century as she moved her career tally to 1,575 runs – the most by a West Indian woman.

Nero, an experienced right-hander from St Vincent, blasted her maiden ODI century in her 58th match. She made exactly 100 off 100 balls with 13 fours and three sixes to move her career tally to eight short of 1,000 runs.

Speaking after the match, Nero said she was quite relieved and satisfied to reach the landmark in her 55th innings. The 32-year-old, who made her international debut way back in 2003, is an attacking batter who enjoys going for her shots.

“When I got the 100th run I felt both relieved and quite satisfied that I finally reached the landmark in West Indies colours. I have been playing for a while now and I always wanted to get a century for the West Indies. Now I finally got it and I will look to kick on in the coming matches. I am one of the most senior members in the team and I was happy I was able to put a platform for the team to build,” she said.

“It was tough going out there. The bowlers bowled pretty well early up but I decided to go for my attacking shots while Stafanie played the anchor role and we were able to put together a huge partnership.”

Taylor, the most successful batter and allrounder in West Indies women’s history was quite content to play second fiddle while Nero went on the rampage in the first half of the innings.

“It felt special to get my third hundred and I was also pleased I was there to celebrate with Nero when she reached triple figures,” said Taylor, who won the ICC Women’s Cricketer of the Year award in September.

“When I went to the crease I realised the pitch was ideal for batting and I knew I had the time to build an innings. I went out with the frame of mind that all I needed to be was patient and have them bowl to me where I wanted it. Batting with Nero, she made it pretty easy.

“She is a powerful player and that helped to take the pressure off me. We always bat well together and we talked between balls and analysed what we had to do. This was a good win and a great start for the team.”

The West Indies next match will be against Pakistan on Thursday. First ball is 9 am (11 pm Wednesday Eastern Caribbean Time/10 pm Jamaica Time).

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