Hayley Matthews’ Top Score Secures ‘Fire’s’ First Win

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Welsh Fire Women v Manchester Originals W at Cardiff (Sophia Gardens) on 31 July

Receiving ‘Hero-of-the-match’ cap and medal for her match-winning 71*(from 50 balls), WIndies star Hayley Matthews was ‘pretty happy’ at half-way; adding that a ‘good job bowling’ made it easy for batters. Commentators added that Hayley Matthews was ‘full of confidence and flair;’ setting an example

‘The Hundred’s’ 12th match was broadcast live (commentators included Michael Atherton, Rob Key and Andrew Flintoff) from SKY Sports TV plus cricket social medial (Alan Gardner for EPSN-cric-info.) Setting-the-scene, commentators mentioned that England’s Sophie Ecclestone would have a key part to play. Before the match, Sophie Ecclestone told Rob Key it was ‘quite hard’ both sides not yet having won a game and desperate for their first win.

*Overdue big scores, both ‘Originals’ openers struggled with the bat and were ‘out’ during the ‘power-play.’ South African Lizelle Lee fell over, only to be immediately ‘run out.’

*With ‘fours’ said to be ‘few-and-far-between,’ commentators criticized Harmanpreet Kaur’s lack of urgency. ‘Originals’ cruised to 52/3 by the half-way point (compared to ‘Fire’ – who were ahead on 73-1)

*For ’Originals,’ South African Mignon du Preez (24 from 15) was said to be ‘impressive’ and ‘started to get a move-on.’

*Sophie Ecclestone (31 from 15) played a cameo innings, hitting 4 ‘fours,’ 1 ‘six’ and scored 9 runs from the last three balls

*‘Fire’ opener Bryony Smith (3) was the only batter out, caught by Cordelia Griffiths off Laura Jackson’s second ball. Later Jackson found she was out-of-luck with two dropped catches. Firstly, bowling a ‘no ball’ gave Georgia Redmayne a reprieve when well-caught by diving Mignon du Preez. Secondly, returning for the penultimate over, Hayley Matthews was dropped embarrassingly at ‘extra cover’ by Emma Lamb. By then, it was of little consequence to the outcome of the match

*In summary, ‘Originals’ slow scoring rate and loss of more wickets enabled ‘Fire’s’ Hayley Matthews to take centre-stage. Matthews scored the bulk of the runs (21 out of 29 runs) by the end of ‘Fire’s’ ‘power-play.’

*Beyond the mid-way point, Matthews celebrated a 50-run partnership with Australian Georgia Redmayne.

*Next over, Matthews celebrated her ‘fifty’ from 35 balls. Finishing on 71*, Matthews’ current score tally is 134 runs, from three matches

Result: Welsh Fire Women 122-1 beat Manchester Originals Women 120-6 by 9 wickets and 12 balls remaining

Manchester Originals Women (MO-W) 120-6 (20 ov. 1.2 runs-per-over); Sophie Ecclestone 31*runs (from 15 balls) Harmanpreet Kaur 26 (32) Mignon du Preez 24(15); ‘Fire’ bowling: Georgia Hennessy 2/24, Hayley Matthews 1/20, Bryony Smith 1/16, Alex Griffiths 1/21; Fow 1-8, 2-18, 3-49, 4-80, 5-106, 6-109

Welsh Fire Women (WF-W) 122-1 (1.4 rpo) Hayley Matthews 71*(50), Georgia Redmayne 38*(38); ‘Originals’ bowling: Laura Jackson 1/27; Fow 1-23

Scorecard at https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/the-hundred-women-s-competition-2021-1252659/welsh-fire-women-vs-manchester-originals-women-12th-match-1252711/full-scorecard