The international season dawned in Worcester, a previously happy stamping ground for England Women – they won the Ashes here in 2005 and defended those won in 2008 here in 2009… In 2005 one of the Ashes heroes was a young quick bowler from Barnsley who made her first international 50 and won player of match and series, in an era when England fast bowlers included Lucy Pearson (LH) and Clare ‘romper’ Taylor.
Fast forward to 2018, the same fast bowler, with willow in her hands was to try and save her over zealous team mates who had fallen to 5-61 and then 8-97 before finishing their 50 ovs 189-9 – the saviour giving herself something to aim at would open the bowling too – Katherine Brunt unbeaten with 72*.
It was not enough, even though Brunt opened the bowling although there were two quick wickets to start including Wolvaardt and Luus fell to a #standard quick piece of work from Taylor behind the stumps.
Even with a fabulous catch by Brunt that was disallowed on replay, and the saffers had over 4 overs and 7 wickets to spare, with Lee ending 92 not out, and her skipper falling the end for 58.
The second game was at Hove 12th June, where there have been a few international games but no ODI tons since the 70’s, there were to be three in one day!
SA elected to field, which they have been rethinking when England reached 70 without loss, but the wicket of Jones for 29 was not to stop the England runfest, with Beaumont and then Taylor passing 50 and then 100, putting on over 150 for the second wicket, finally finishing on 331/6.
SA opened with an almost 150 run stand, however it used more than half their overs, 141-1 when Wolvaardt was caught behind for 32. from there wickets fell regularly, the highest stand 41.
The last game of the series was at Canterbury, June 15, SA won the toss and decided to bat, but Lee fell in the 4th over and apart from fellow opener Wolvaardt and skipper van Niekerk, no-one else got past 20, the last 5 wickets adding only 16 to finish 228ao.
Englands chase centered around another ton for Beaumont, plus 80 for Knight, adding 154, with Beaumont man of the match.
On to the tri series t20s with NZ.