England Women finalised their preparation for the ICC Women’s World Cup with a seven-wicket victory over New Zealand at Derby, the venue for Saturday’s opener against India.
A disciplined and collective bowling performance saw New Zealand dismissed for 130 and laid the foundations for an encouraging victory, secured with Tammy Beaumont not out on 51.
With Heather Knight, Sarah Taylor and Katherine Brunt rested, England picked a team of 12 (11 of whom could bat and 11 who could bowl) with off-spinner Dani Hazell once again stepping in to take the reins. New Zealand’s captain Suzie Bates won the toss and opted to bat.
In the absence of Brunt, Nat Sciver opened the bowling alongside Anya Shrubsole and it was the latter who got England on to the front foot, dismissing Rachel Priest and the talismanic Bates. Both players are potential match-winners but it wasn’t to be today, caught in the ring by Georgia Elwiss and Danni Wyatt respectively.
New Zealand’s top order contains a number of dangerous players so even at 30 for two there was the potential for the White Ferns to turn it around but England never let up.
Amy Sattherthwaite – who earlier this year became only the second player in the history of international cricket to score four consecutive ODI tons – hit a few flowing boundaries in reaching 24 but when she nicked Jenny Gunn to back-up wicketkeeper Lauren Winfield England were on top.
Katey Martin and Maddy Green put on 42 for the fifth wicket but England’s spinners never allowed them to score freely. Three wickets became four when Alex Hartley recovered from dropping a catch off her own bowling to clean-bowl Martin and skipper Hazell repeated the feat to dismiss Green, leaving New Zealand in a spot of bother at 95 for five with half their overs gone.
The big-hitting Sophie Devine – batting in a cap – arrived as a reminder of New Zealand’s depth but she greeted Laura Marsh’s first over by picking out Wyatt at deep mid-wicket. Marsh picked up another when she rushed through Katie Perkins’ defences two balls later.
Anna Peterson, Thamsyn Newton and Lea Tahuhu all found mid-off as they tried to hit out and increase their side’s total and New Zealand were bowled out for 130, a total England would have been very happy to restrict their opponents to.
The wickets were shared around with two each for Shrubsole, Gunn and Hartley and very tidy figures of 4-1-7-3 for Laura Marsh.
England’s openers, Lauren Winfield and Beaumont, began the reply before lunch and soon progressed to 45 without loss after 10, enjoying the extra pace on the ball from Tahuhu in particular.
Winfield retired at lunch after a small back spasm and Sciver – who was rested for England’s victory over Sri Lanka at Chesterfield – was able to get a bit more time at the crease.
New Zealand went hunting for wickets after the break but that meant both Sciver and Beaumont were gifted some loose deliveries. Sciver made a sparky 39 with six boundaries before picking out deep mid-wicket and Wyatt fell cheaply but Beaumont and Fran Wilson saw England to a comfortable victory.
You can see the full score card here.
Report courtesy of the ECB