A look ahead to the final of the inaugural Women’s U19 T20 World Cup, and as usual some of my photographs.
This post looks ahead to tomorrow’s final of the inaugural Women’s Under 19 T20 World Cup. England and India will be fighting it out.
India did enough to make the semi-finals with some comfort, but in spite of the inclusion of two established senior internationals in Shafali Verma and Richa Ghosh they have not had things all their own way. They beat New Zealand very comfortably in their semi-final, as the latter produced their only poor performance of the tournament at just the wrong time.
England utterly bossed their first round group, and were barely any less convincing winners of their Super Six group. It was a different matter in the semi-final against Australia, as their batting misfired for the only time in the tournament, and they had a mere 99 to defend. However, their bowlers set about repairing the damage in very impressive fashion. At 59-7, and again at 77-8 they seemed to have the match won. The ninth wicket pair added 19, but then, a mere boundary stroke away from the final, Milly Illingworth was run out to make it 96-9. Four balls later Grace Scrivens claimed the final wicket, and England were home by three runs. Hannah Baker was named Player of the Match for taking 3-10 from her four overs.
A BATTLE ROYAL
I expect this contest to go down to the wire, but I think that England’s successful defence of a mere 99 in their semi-final is enough to make them favourites – their batting has failed only that once all tournament, and their bowling has been magnificent throughout, whereas India came into the semi-finals as the least impressive of the four qualifiers. Whatever happens tomorrow England have let the cricketing world know in no uncertain terms that the future of their women’s team is in good hands.
A brief bit about England’s great start to the Super Six stage of the inaugural U19 Women’s World Cup, and some photographs.
Today the Super Sixes stage of the inaugural Women’s Under 19 T20 World Cup got underway. England were in action against Ireland first up. A dominant batting performance, headlined by Grace Scrivens scoring 93, while Liberty Heap backed her up with 42, and with Seren Smale and Niamh Holland providing late cameos to boost the final total saw England rack up 207-2 from their 20 overs. England were equally dominant with the ball, with Hannah Baker (leg spin) and Sophia Smale (slow left arm) each collecting three cheap wickets. Ireland limped to 86 all out, and England had won by 121 runs, giving them a net RR of +6.050 as well as the two points for the win. The longer this tournament goes on the stronger this England side look. Full scorecard here.
SOPHIA AND SEREN SMALE
In spite of sharing a surname and both having forenames beginning with S Sophia and Seren Smale are apparently unrelated. Sophia, the left arm slow bowler, hails originally from Newport, Monmouthshire, while Seren, a keeper/batter was born in Wrexham, Denbighshire.
Sophia Smale has already had some success in The Hundred, but it is probably Seren Smale who has the easier route to full international honours – as a keeper and a good batter she has two ways of gaining recognition, while unless England opt to play two left arm slow bowlers (unusual in the modern era to put it mildly) in the same XI Sophia Smale has Sophie Ecclestone between her and full international recognition. Nonetheless, I hope and expect that both will gain full international honours.
Even in the sub-zero temperatures that we are currently experiencing in King’s Lynn there are still plenty of opportunities for photography, so here is my usual sign off…