Fifth One-Day International, New Zealand WHITE FERNS 230/8 in 50 overs (Devine 58, Perkins 70 not out; Grundy 3-36) lost to England 232/5 in 45 overs (Taylor 93, Sciver 65 not out) by five wickets. England Women won the Series 3-2.
After having been 2-1 down in the Series, England completed a dramatic comeback to clinch the women’s One-Day International Series 3-2 with a five wicket win over the New Zealand WHITE FERNS at Bert Sutcliffe Oval in Lincoln.
However, it was all too little too late for England, as the Ferns retained the satisfaction of having won the opening three ICC Women’s Championship games 2-1 — the final two ODIs having counted towards the Series, but not towards the ICC Women’s Championship points table.
Said White Ferns captain Suzie Bates at Bert Sutcliffe Oval, “If you’d given me a choice at the start of the Series between taking out the ICC Championship points game 2-1, or winning the overall One-Day International Series without those four Championship points, I would have gone for the points, no question.
“They are what really count for us at the moment as we look towards the next Women’s Cricket World Cup and our world ranking.”
On a scorching Canterbury day that pushed the mercury up to 29 degrees, the Ferns were sent in for the Series finale after Bates lost a remarkable seventh toss in eight games.
England made key early breakthroughs — Bates, Rachel Priest and Amy Satterthwaite all back in the pavilion cheaply, despite Bates cracking three boundaries off the opening four overs from Kate Cross and Katherine Brunt. They had each paid for their positivity against a fired-up attack, captain Bates falling victim to first change Rebecca Grundy.
Sophie Devine (58 off 87) once again calmly switched to a more circumspect game to underpin the Ferns’ recovery. Katie Perkins was on a careful 19* when Devine tickled a single for her half-century, and Devine’s composure set it up for plucky number seven to then kick in through the last seven overs.
The pair had put on 75 much-needed runs together and Perkins charged on at the death, after Devine had fallen.
Perkins reached her own half-century in the 46th over — by now operating at a strike rate over 70, and finished unbeaten with a career-best 70 off 88 balls, having gained momentum as she went and running agressive threes amid her five boundaries.
Lea Tahuhu provided assistance at the death, too, marking Brunt's return to the attack with a four and showing herself to be a useful number eleven.
The match was also notable for Sara McGlashan breaking Nicola Browne’s New Zealand record for the most One-Day International caps, with her 126th appearance. She had been the unfortunate victim, however, of a lightning fast stumping from Sarah Taylor, the fielding highlight of the game.
Listen to Sara McGlashan review the match, the Series and the occasion of her record match
The Ferns’ tally of 230/8 was at least 20 runs shy of par on a good wicket and set the England women a required RPO of 4.62, but they made up for it with an early breakthrough of their own to give themselves a fighting chance, when pace bowler Lea Tahuhu trapped opening bat Heather Knight for no score.
Devine chimed in by taking out England captain, the dangerous Charlotte Edwards, lbw as well, then Georgia Guy added a third lbw to the scoreboard in picking up Danielle Wyatt.
England were wobbling at 71/3 in the 16th and the Ferns were in with a sniff, but Sarah Taylor was positive and backed up her form from the previous match, falling just seven runs short of what would have been a stylish century when she was run out by a quick throw to the keeper from Amy Satterthwaite.
The Ferns had been frustrated to drop her twice across her innings, and at 167/5 Taylor had already significantly damaged New Zealand’s hopes of taking out the Series.
On a good surface, she had set it up for Natalie Sciver (65* off 63 balls) and Katherine Brunt (19*) to bring home the five-wicket victory with five overs to spare.