Source: Julian Thompson

Sophie Luff’s ‘Storm’ Handed Dramatic Last-Ball Win

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Sunrisers v Western Storm at The Cloudfm County Ground, Chelmsford on May 18

Beefed-up by Heather Knight’s return to Storm from last week’s ’Barmy Army’ captaincy in the Doha (Fairbreak) tournament, there was little to choose between either side. Four bowlers from each side took wickets. Both team’s batters mostly reached double figures and hit comparable numbers of ‘fours.’ Sunrisers’ teenage star Grace Scrivens was outstanding: making her maiden half-century and taking four wickets as Sunrisers best performing bowler (4/33.) Sunrisers looked certain of victory after chalking-up their record power play and final score. Despite losing big hitters Sophie Luff and Fran Wilson for single figures, Storm’s batters hit five ‘sixes’ (compared to Sunrisers’ two). Five Storm batters scored more than 25 runs (compared to two for Sunrisers.) The match reached its dramatic climax when a return-throw crossed the boundary adding four overthrows (in addition to two runs scored) – handing Sophie Luff’s Storm a dramatic last ball win.

*Sophia Smale (28/0) made a confident start to her bowling career for Storm as just two runs were conceded from her first over.

*Sunrisers early scoring rate accelerated as openers Cordelia Griffiths (26 from 18) and Grace Scrivens (56 runs from 42 balls) hit nine ‘fours’ during their power play. Cordelia Griffiths was ‘run out’ during seamer Dani Gibson’s (1/25) first over; whereas teenage Grace Scrivens progressed to her maiden half-century (56 runs from 42 balls.)

*Bowling the sixth over, Grace Hennessy was lofted for ’six’ by Naomi Datanni (13 from 16); at which point Sunrisers were 61/1 from their first six overs (‘power play’.) *An eventful ninth over from Georgia Hennessy saw Naomi Dattani caught by debutante Smale. At mid-way, after ten overs, Sunrisers were 85/2.

*Heather Knight took one wicket with her 3rd over, trapping Mady Villiers (11) ‘leg before.’ After 100 balls (16.4 overs) Sunrisers were 133/3.

*Two more wickets fell to stumpings by Natasha Wraith: Grace Scrivens and finally Kelly Castle (14): from Dani Gibson’s death over from which only ’twos’ and ‘ones’ were scored.

*Sunrisers closed on 160/5 – their highest ever score in the Charlotte Edwards Cup.

*By comparison, Storm’s power play wasn’t not so fruitful (37/3 v 61/1) remaining behind at mid-way after ten overs (70/3 v 85/2).

*Somerset pairing Sophie Luff and Georgia Hennessy departed with single figures, causing a mini-collapse.

*England skipper Heather Knight (27 from 24) staged a recovery with All-Rounder Dani Gibson  (27 from 20), thwarted by Grace Scrivens who clean bowled Knight and snatched Gibson’s wicket three balls later. At the 100 ball benchmark (16.4 overs) Storm had gained ground, but with fewer wickets in hand (124/6 v 133/3.) For Sunrisers, Jo Gardner (2/23) was on a ‘hat-trick’ when Katie George was stumped, awarding a ‘golden duck’ next ball to Niamh Holland. Keeper Scarlett Hughes played a key role with four dismissals: three stumping, plus a catch. Alex Griffiths (25* from 13) saw Storm to victory, partnered by bowler-turned-batter Katie George (34 from 23) who made top score. Griffiths was also partnered by keeper Natasha Wraith (27 from 16) and Sophia Smale (3*) who did well to keep Alex Griffiths batting at the striker’s end (twice) during a memorable final over, evidenced by a short videoclip at URL

In summary, despite Sunrisers record score, errors of judgement cost them the match; at a point when Storm needed an unlikely fifteen runs to win from the final over. A first misfield was backed-up, saving one run by cutting-off ‘four.’ When two Alex Griffiths scampered ‘two’ from the final ball to bring both scores level, Sunrisers fielders may have misconstrued that the match was tied. As seen on the video clip, the fielder’s return throw propelled the ball across the boundary for four overthrows, handing Sophie Luff’s Storm a dramatic last-ball win.

Result: (Group ‘B’) Western Storm Women 164/9 (20 overs) beat Sunrises Women 160/5 (20 overs) by 1 wicket

Western Storm W 164/9 (20 overs, 8.2 runs-per-over): Katie George 34 runs (from 43 balls), Natasha Wraith 27(16), Danielle ‘Dani’ Gibson 27(20), Heather Knight 27(24), Alex Griffiths 25* (13); Sunrisers bowling: Grace Scrivens 4/33, Joanne Gardner 2/23, Naomi Dattani 1/21, Abtaha Maqsood 1/30; Fow 1-50, 2-76, 3-97, 4-140, 5-160;

Sunrisers W 160/5 (20 overs, 8.0 runs-per-over) Grace Scrivens 56 (42), Jo Gardner 28* (24), Cordelia Griffith 26 (18), Mady Villiers 11 (10), Kelly Castle 14 (11), Naomi Dattani 13 (16); Western Storm bowling: Heather Knight 1/22, Danielle ‘Dani’ Gibson 1/25, Alex Griffiths 1/25, Georgia Hennessy 1/39; Fow 1-13, 2-15, 3-29, 4-70, 5-71, 6-117, 7-140, 8-140, 9-144.

Scorecard & Statistics at

Series of mini video highlights are free-to-view (picture-in-picture mode) from Sunrisers TV (selecting highlights from the relevant match), at URL

Footnote for Apple users wanting to view all videos collectively, slowly scroll downwards from the red-framed match centre screen