England women complete 162 run win against Sri Lanka and celebrate sixth series victory of the year
Four wickets from off-spinner Laura Marsh has helped England women to complete a 162 run victory in the fourth One-Day International (ODI) in Colombo today, and seal a 4-0 series win against the hosts.
Spearheaded by a seventh wicket partnership of 104 by Natalie Sciver (77) and Danielle Hazell (45) yesterday, England set Sri Lanka 241 to win from their 50 overs before play was forced to be abandoned between innings due to rain. Returning this morning to finish the match – in accordance with ICC Women’s Championship Playing Conditions – a clinical performance from England in the field bowled Sri Lanka out for just 78.
The conclusion of fourth ODI today marks the end of the busiest ever year for Heather Knight’s team, and completes a perfect record of six consecutive series wins in 2016. Critically, the team have also secured automatic qualification for the ICC Women’s World Cup on home soil next summer, finishing second in the ICC Women’s Championship table.
Reflecting on the last 12 months, England Women’s Head Coach, Mark Robinson, said: “It’s been an incredible year, and there has been huge change during this time. We put out a team in the third ODI against Sri Lanka on Tuesday that was completely different to the one that took on South Africa at the start of the year. As a group, we’ve come a long way, a lot has happened, and of course there have been a few bumps along the way, but overall we really feel that we are moving in the right direction, which is the most important thing.
“Since the beginning the players have given it everything, which has been fantastic, I couldn’t have asked them for any more. Looking at where the team was after that ICC World Twenty20 in March to where they are now in terms of their physical condition, there’s no comparison, and that’s testament to how much hard work they have all put in.
“The emergence of Heather Knight as the new leader of the team has been exciting to watch. With every match and every series she is getting better and better. As a captain and a player she gives it absolutely everything, and I am proud of everything she has done in such a short space of time.
“I said from the start that we would only really know where we are as a team after a year, and I’m confident that we are on the right track. We want to be more resilient, more professional, and the clinical nature of our performance in the third ODI of this series against Sri Lanka showed how far we have come in that respect.
“The objective for next year is of course to win the ICC Women’s World Cup, it’s why we play the game, and we shouldn’t be embarrassed to say that. Whether we are quite ready to do so as a young group, is a different matter, but our first dream is to win it and we will do everything we can to live that dream.”
During 2016 England women have played 26 matches across all formats of the game, and won 21 of them at a win percentage of 81 percent.
England women v Sri Lanka women – 4th One-Day International, R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium (RPICS), Colombo
England women won the toss and elected to bat
England women – 240-9 (Natalie Sciver 77, Danielle Hazell 45, Inoshi Priyadharshani 3-28, Inoka Ranaweera 3-38)
Sri Lanka women – 78 (Laura Marsh 4-21, Danielle Hazell 3-21)
England women won by 162 runs
England women secure two ICC Women’s Championship points
Following the match Heather Knight and Natalie Sciver spoke to ECB TV:
England women’s tour to Sri Lanka 2016 results in full:
|9.11.16||1st ODI||Sinhalese Sports Club (SSC), Colombo||England won by 8 wickets|
|12.11.16||2nd ODI*||R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium (RPICS), Colombo||England won by 122 runs|
|15.11.16||3rd ODI*||R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium (RPICS), Colombo||England won by 5 wickets|
|17.11.16||4th ODI *||R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium (RPICS), Colombo||England won by 162 runs|
* ICC Women’s Championship fixture
Report courtesy of the ECB