CRICKET

England outclass South Africa for a clean sweep

Sophie Ecclestone starred with an all-round outing as England Women outclassed South Africa to sweep the T20I series 3-0 with a 38-run win in Derby on Monday (July 25). The visitors were unable to pick up a single win across formats on their tour to England.

Although Sophia Dunkley was dismissed for a duck on the first ball of the game by Nonkululeko Mlaba, the top and middle order steadied the ship. They ensured that contributions came through the line-up thereafter to keep England on course to get to a defendable total. Mlaba, however, kept denting England’s recovery with timely wickets, finishing with 3-22 in her four. Amy Jones fell for an 18-ball 28 with England nearing the 150-mark, but it was Sophie Ecclestone’s late onslaught for an unbeaten 12-ball 33 with four boundaries and two sixes that took them to an imposing 176.

South Africa too lost an early wicket when Lara Goodall was knocked over by Issy Wong in the opening over. But Tazmin Brits kept South Africa afloat with the top score in the match of 59. It was a sedate innings (off 57 balls), but she helped hold one end in the innings where South Africa’s batters couldn’t capitalise on their starts. Freya Kemp and Ecclestone returned two wickets apiece as South Africa were restricted to 138/6 in the end.

Brief scores: England Women 176/6 in 20 overs (Danielle Wyatt 30, Amy Jones 28, Sophie Ecclestone 33*; Nonkululeko Mlaba 3-22) beat South Africa Women 138/6 in 20 overs (Tazmin Brits 59; Freya Kemp 2-18, Sophie Ecclestone 2-24) by 38 runs.

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