Cricket

Clinical Western Storm consolidate top spot with thumping win


WOMEN’S SUPER LEAGUE

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Bolton cracked an impressive 87 for Lancashire Thunder © Getty

Southern Vipers vs Western Storm

A comprehensive team performance saw Western Storm thrash Southern Vipers by 9 wickets in their Women’s Cricket Super League match, thereby, consolidating the top spot of the points table. After choosing to bowl at Arundel Castle, the Storm bowlers combined as a unit and never let the innings gather any sort of momentum. Wickets at regular intervals derailed the Vipers’ innings with only Sara McGlashan’s 31 preventing a total mismatch. The Vipers were bowled out for a paltry 91 in the 19th over.

Chasing 92, the Storm’s openers Rachel Priest and India’s in-form Smriti Mandhana took the attack to the opposition from the start. Mandhana who made the joint-fastest T20 fifty ever in the last game continued her great run and finished unbeaten on a 27-ball 43. She was given good company by fellow opener Priest as the target was comfortably hauled down in 9.3 overs.

Riding on such a massive win, the net run rate of Storm received a significant boost. They are leading the points table while their opponents are stationed on fifth spot, one above the bottom-dwellers.

Brief scores: Southern Vipers 91 in 18.1 overs (Sara McGlashan 31; Claire Nicholas 2-17) lost to Western Storm 93/1 in 9.3 overs (Smriti Mandhana 43; Arran Brindle 1-13) by 9 wickets.

Surrey Stars vs Lancashire Thunder

Captain Natalie Sciver’s magnificent 57-ball 95 to go with two big wickets went in vain as Nicole Bolton and Harmanpreet Kaur produced magic with the bat to give Lancashire Thunder a thrilling five-wicket win in their Women’s Cricket Super League match at The Oval, London. Choosing to bowl, the Stars were reduced to 17/3 in quick time as Emma Lamb snared two wickets. But then Sciver took over and produced shots all around the wicket, first sharing a stand with Dane van Niekerk and then took the aggressive route as the innings neared its climactic phase.

Getting to 100 seemed a realistic possibility when Sciver took 16 runs off the 18th over bowled by Hazell but a fine last over by Ecclestone prevented that. Eventually, Sciver remained unbeaten on 95 as her side made 148 in the stipulated 20 overs.In pursuit of 149, opener Bolton and Evelyn Jones laid the platform with a 62-run stand before the stand was broken. Bolton though kept going and when she fell, India’s Harmanpreet Kaur took over, playing a crucial cameo of 34 in 21 balls which put the game in her side’s reach. There was to be another twist at the end as three quick wickets gave the Stars hope, but Kaur smashed 12 off 3 balls when the equation read 11 off 4 in the final over. Eventually, Thunder won with a ball to spare.

Brief scores: Surrey Stars 148/5 in 20 overs (Natalie Sciver 95*; Emma Lamb 3-34) lost to Lancashire Thunder 151/5 in 19.5 overs (Nicole Bolton 87; Natalie Sciver 2-26) by 5 wickets.

Loughborough Lightning vs Yorkshire Diamonds

Rachael Haynes slammed a fifty and then the bowlers combined to give Loughborough Lightning a comfortable 41-run win over bottom-placed Yorkshire Diamonds in their Women’s Cricket Super League match at Haslegrave Ground, Loughborough. Winning the toss and opting to bat first, the Lightning’s innings was given a flying start by their openers – Rachael Haynes and Sophie Devine. Together the pair added 80 in 9.5 overs before they were separated. Soon Haynes departed as well as the Diamonds mounted a comeback. The last 10 overs of the innings saw just 63 runs come as wickets fell at regular intervals. The Diamonds used seven bowlers and restricted their opponents to 143 in 20 overs.

Chasing 144, the Diamonds got off to a bad start and were soon 19 for 3 and 57 for 6. The game was done at that stage even though lower down the order Thea Brookes smashed a 19-ball 30, but her wicket proved to be the final nail in the coffin. The Lightning ran out comfortable victors by 41 runs which helped boost their net run rate. While this was their third win in four games for Lightning, the Diamonds have not won a single game out of four they have played so far.

Brief scores: Loughborough Lightning 143/6 in 20 overs (Rachael Haynes 50; Katie Levick 2-24) beat Yorkshire Diamonds 102/9 in 20 overs (Thea Brookes 30; Kirstie Gordon 2-10) by 41 runs.

© Cricbuzz

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