Nat Sciver-Brunt, Knight help England make a winning start


Nat Sciver-Brunt, Knight help England make a winning start

by Staff • Last updated on Sat, Feb 11, 2023

Natalie Sciver-Brunt led the way for England’s winning start in the 2023 T20 World Cup, as her unbeaten 30-ball 40 helped England chase down West Indies’ total of 135 for 7 with seven wickets and 5.3 overs to spare, at the Boland Park in Paarl.

Electing to bat, West Indies made a steady start with the veteran duo of Hayley Matthews and Stafanie Taylor putting on a 47-run stand for the opening wicket in only 6.2 overs. While Matthews got going with a flurry of boundaries – a couple of them on the offside off Sophie Ecclestone and three in an over off Katherine Sciver-Brunt – Taylor struggled to find momentum. She clawed her way to a 15-ball 3 before getting trapped legbefore by Sarah Gleen.

Matthews, nonetheless, helped West Indies to a strong foundation as she continued her dominant display in the company of Shemaine Campbelle. However, once the skipper was trapped legbefore by Ecclestone in the 11th over, West Indies’ innings started to stutter. A few wickets were thrown away via run outs – Shabika Gajnabi and Chinelle Henry – and boundaries slowly dried up.

The attempts to find quick runs in the late overs didn’t materialise as Eccelstone had even Afy Fletcher and Zaida James trapped leg-before to limit West Indies to a modest total.

Even as run-scoring wasn’t the easiest on the pitch, England’s early offensive ensured that West Indies had no chance in the contest to come back and take a dominant position. The assault began after two quiet overs, when Sophia Duckley stepped out thrice against Matthews to hammer her for a six and two fours in a 17-run over.

Even as Danni Wyatt fell soon after, Buckley’s sustained attack even thereafter ensured that England went past the 50-run mark in less than five overs. Even as West Indies kept striking at regular intervals with Henry striking twice in quick succession, picking three wickets in 7.2 overs, their attack ensured that more than half the target was wiped off by the time Nat and Heather Knight joined in the middle.

The duo began slowly before Nat cut loose in the 11th over against Matthews, cracking three boundaries off her. Nat and Knight added 67 runs in only 7.1 overs to help England over the line, with the latter thumping Henry over the offside region for a six.

Brief Scores: West Indies 135/7 in 20 overs (Hayley Matthews 42, Shemaine Campbelle 34; Sophie Ecclestone 3-23) lost to England 138/3 in 14.3 overs ( Nat Sciver-Brunt 40*, Sophie Dunkley 34, Heather Knight 32*; Chinelle Henry 2-30) by 7 wickets.

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