Earlier this week, all-rounder Ash Gardner put on a career-best performance to help Australia to gold against India in the women’s T20 event at Birmingham 2022.
The Murawari woman claimed the crucial wicket of Shafali Verma (11) in her three-over, 3-16 bowling effort as India collapsed in the latter stages of their innings to fall nine runs short.
Opting to bat first, Australia built a 161-run chase total, largely thanks to opener Beth Mooney (61 off 41) and captain Meg Lanning (36 off 26) as they looked to make Commonwealth Games history.
Gardner also contributed to the total amassing 25 off 15 balls which included two boundaries and a six.
As India built a substantial partnership between Jemima Rodrigues and captain Harmanpreet Kaur, helping them regain control of the game, Rodrigues was bowled by pace bowler Megan Schutt (2-27) before Gardner’s reintroduction saw her claim the back-to-back wickets of Pooja Vastrajkar and Kaur, leading to career best T20 international bowling figures.
"It was certainly a medal that we never thought we'd ever win, we never thought we'd be a part of a Commonwealth Games," Gardner told media after the win. "We've won a lot of medals, but I think this one's pretty special."
Throughout Birmingham 2022, Gardner has been an instrumental member of the squad with 96 off 70 balls in the three games she batted.
The historic victory means the Australian women’s cricket team are the reigning champions at the Commonwealth Games, T20 World Cup and ODI World Cup level.
Gardner is one of seven team members to play in all three tournaments.