Heather Knight has opened her account as England women’s captain in perfect style after leading her team to a 3-0 series whitewash against Pakistan, with a 202 run victory in the final Royal London One-Day International in Taunton today.
The 3-0 score line means that England’s 2017 ICC Women’s World Cup qualification campaign is firmly on track, as they now sit comfortably in third position in the ICC Women’s Championship (ICC WC) on 19 points, having secured all six points on offer against Pakistan. Australia currently top the table on 24 points, with the West Indies in second, just one point ahead of England. The fourth automatic qualification spot is occupied by New Zealand (16 points), with all eight teams having now completed five rounds of the competition, with two rounds left to play.
England will be aiming to leapfrog the West Indies when they travel to Jamaica for round six in October, before finishing in Sri Lanka with their final round of fixtures in November.
Speaking immediately after the third and final Royal London One-Day International against Pakistan in Taunton today, England women’s captain, Heather Knight, said:
“Before this series started lots of people asked me what sort of captain I wanted to be, and the simple answer was a winning one, so it’s brilliant to have got off to such a great start. I’m really pleased with how the team has played throughout the three matches – as a group we have shown lots of positivity and proactive intent, and we have smashed records along the way. I couldn’t have asked for any more from the girls – I’m really proud of all of them.
“With one year to go until the start of the ICC Women’s World Cup here in England, we have put ourselves firmly into contention for automatic qualification for that tournament, and we will continue to look forward to the challenges that lie ahead. As a new squad, we have only played three matches, and it’s been a brilliant effort so far, but now comes the test of maintaining this level of performance as we build towards a home World Cup next summer.”
England and Pakistan now travel to Bristol to play the first encounter of a three-match NatWest International Twenty20 (IT20) series on Sunday 3rd July. The second and third matches of the series will be played on Tuesday 5th and Thursday 7th July at the Ageas Bowl and Essex County Ground in Chelmsford.
Report courtesy of the ECB