Indonesia’s women record historic SEA Games gold in cricket

The victorious Indonesian women’s six-a-side team.
The victorious Indonesian women’s six-a-side team.

Phnom Penh, Cambodia, May 10, 2023: Indonesia outclassed the Philippines in the final of the women’s cricket six-a-side tournament at the AZ Group Cricket Oval in Phnom Penh on Wednesday afternoon.

Indonesia, batting first, played superbly in scoring 78 for the loss of only one wicket in their six overs.

The Philippines were always up against it and struggled for runs on the sandy outfield, scoring only 25-5 to lose by 53 runs.

As the score suggests, the Indonesians were superior in every department. The opening pair of Ni Putu Ayu Nanda Sakarini (21) and Maria Corazon Konjep Wombak (31 not out) put on 68 for the first wicket, punishing the bad balls and keeping the scoreboard ticking over, before Sakarini was caught at mid-on by Jennifer Olmillo Alumbro off the bowling of April Escarlan.

Andriani Andriani came to the crease and added 10 not out from four balls with two boundaries as Indonesia closed on an impressive 78-1.

The Indonesians were assisted by some wayward Philippine bowling as they conceded 11 wides, three byes and two no-balls.

In reply, the Philippines never got going against an accurate and relentless attack, backed up by some feisty fielding, despite the tough conditions in the outfield.

Indonesia’s captain, Ni Made Putri Suwandewi, said it was a major breakthrough for cricket in Indonesia.

“It was a very exciting moment because it was the final. It’s historic for us and Indonesia’s first gold medal for cricket, so I hope this is going to be a milestone,” she said. 

The Indonesian players come from different provinces and have different backgrounds in cricket, some of them playing at high school and others being drawn to it because of the Australian influence in Indonesia, particularly in Bali.

“We are all from different provinces – Jakarta, West Java, Bali, Borneo and Papua,” added the skipper.

“We have been practising a long time, two years, but we started to practise as a team for the SEA Games from January. It’s just a relief it’s over. We still have some matches going forward so we will be looking after for that.”

Wombaki’s unbeaten 31 from 18 deliveries included four boundaries and earned her the player of the match award. 

This is cricket’s second appearance in the SEA Games following its debut in Malaysia in 2017. There are eight events – four in women and four in men.