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England beat New Zealand by five wickets: fifth women’s T20 cricket international – as it happened
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England beat New Zealand by five wickets: fifth women’s T20 cricket international – as it happened

That’s all for today/tonight. Thanks for your company, I’ll leave you with a report of England’s victory.

Heather Knight’s verdict

I was really pleased with how we started. We identified that it was quite a seam-friendly wicket Nat used her wobble ball really well – she doesn’t often bowl three in the Powerplay – and did a brilliant job.

Lauren Filer, bowling with the wind behind her, was really exciting to watch. I was a bit scared at first slip to be honest! I knew if there were any edges they’d come pretty quick. She’s a real wicket-taking threat, which is important in T20 cricket, and she’s developing all the time. She was working in a supermarket about a year ago, so to see her do so well is great.

If we’re picky we let them get a few too many, but I thought Izzy Gaze batted really. We spoke about chasing, especially after the third game, and it was good to get the runs quite calmly. Nat was outstanding again. It was a slightly strange wicket, with a bit of a tennis-ball bounce; it was quite hard to start but I thought the options we took were really good.

New Zealand captain Amelia Kerr speaks

Izzy [Gaze] was outstanding. She works bloody hard so it was nice to see her come off today.

England are a quality side. At times in different games we were in winning positions but couldn’t quite get over the line. Today I thought our character, fight and energy were outstanding. We did well to take it as deep as we did. It probably doesn’t help when your spinner’s bowling front-foot no-balls!

It’s a real honour to captain the White Ferns, I absolutely love this team. They’re an easy group to lead. It’s even more special to do it here at the Basin. It means a lot to me.

The player of the series is the brilliant Maia Bouchier (223 runs at 56 with a strike-rate of 130)

The series couldn’t have gone much better. I wanted to contribute a bit more today but we’re really happy with the win. There was a little bit of pressure at the start of the series but to have an opportunity at the top of the order was really exciting. I’m really happy that I’ve been able to do well at this level. I want to do that consistently now.

Throughout the winter I’ve been working on the mental side of the game, trying to avoid distraction as much as possible. I always try and come back to enjoying the game. I always think: can I look to play really good cricket shots and not force anything? In the last couple of games it came off with a smile, and that’s all I want to do.

The player of the match is Nat Sciver-Brunt (31 from 27 balls, 4-0-24-2)

It’s great to get on a seaming wicket and explore that. It’s nice to adapt to different conditions and change your game when needed.

It would have been nicer if me and Heather were in at the end, but our partnership solidified the chase.

That was a slightly scruffy run-chase, and England looked a bit vulnerable against the spin of Amelia Kerr, but they got the job done to complete an impressive 4-1 victory.

This time Maia Bouchier was the only member of the top five who didn’t contribute. But she has been the star of the series and is in pole position to open alongside Danni Wyatt at the World Cup.

18.5 overs: England 138-5 (Jones 6, Dunkley 6) Sophia Dunkley gets the job done, slashing her second ball for four to seal a good victory for England.

England are stumbling towards the finish line. Knight lofts tamely to cover to end an accomplished innings of 35; England need 5 from 9 balls.

18th over: England 128-4 (Knight 34, Jones 5) The pressure created by that wicket is released when Amelia Kerr bowls an untimely no-ball. Amy Jones punishes her by slog-sweeping the free hit for four. Nine to win.

Well bowled Amelia Kerr! She beat Nat Sciver-Brunt all ends up with a googly that kept low and hit the leg stump. New Zealand still have an outside chance of victory; England need 16 from 15.

17th over: England 120-3 (Sciver-Brunt 31, Knight 32) Knight clips Tahuhu for four to bring up the fifty partnership from 38 balls. It’s been a masterclass in risk management. You can never control risk completely in a T20 runchase but they have minimised it while scoring at eight an over.

The result is that England need 17 from 18 balls.

16th over: England 113-3 (Sciver-Brunt 30, Knight 26) Knight pulls Jonas for four, with at least a single off the other deliveries. Sciver-Brunt and Knight are expert, unobtrusive finishers who have put England in complete control.

15th over: England 103-3 (Sciver-Brunt 28, Knight 18) Knight makes it back-to-back boundaries off the Kerrs by openin the face to steer Jess’s first delivery past short third.

Four singles off the last five balls make it another good over for England. New Zealand have got to break this partnership,

14th over: England 95-3 (Sciver-Brunt 26, Knight 12) Amelia Kerr brings herself back on and almost strikes when Knight mistimes a tenative shot that loops to safety on the leg side. I think it stopped in the pitch.

A very good over is tarnished when Sciver-Brunt top-edges a sweep over the keeper’s head for four off the last delivery. That boundary keeps the required rate down to seven an over, or 42 from 36 balls.

13th over: England 87-3 (Sciver-Brunt 20, Knight 10) An outstanding over from Tahuhu, bowling very straight to cramp Sciver-Brunt in particular for room. Just three runs from it, so England need 50 from 42 balls.

12th over: England 84-3 (Sciver-Brunt 18, Knight 9) Kerr misses a run-out chance off her own bowling, swivelling to throw wide of the stumps at the non-striker’s end with Knight barely in the frame. That feels like a big moment because England have the run-rate under control now, so wickets are essential. Sciver-Brunt reinforces that point by scooping the next ball for four.

11th over: England 76-3 (Sciver-Brunt 12, Knight 7) A surprisingly loose over from Mair, with a boundary ball apiece for Knight and Sciver-Brunt. Despite the wicket of Wyatt, England have scored 22 from the last two overs.

10th over: England 65-3 (Sciver-Brunt 7, Knight 1) Sciver-Brunt and Knight, together in yet another run-chase. They need 72 from 60 balls.

Danni Wyatt has gone! She charged Amelia Kerr, who saw her coming and slipped it a bit wider. Wyatt ran past it and Izzy Gaze completed a simple stumping.

Until then it had been a good over for England, with consecutive deliveries going to the boundary. The first beat Sciver-Brunt’s sweep and bounced past Gaze for four byes; the second was swept in the air past short fine leg.

9th over: England 54-2 (Wyatt 20, Sciver-Brunt 2) Wyatt has been starved of the strike a bit, facing only 20 of the 54 balls so far. She’s still going at a run a ball despite not hitting a boundary, and sweeps three off Jonas’s last delivery to turn an okay over into a good one for England.

8th over: England 45-2 (Wyatt 14, Sciver-Brunt 0) This is building up nicely. England need 92 from 72 balls.

Four and out for Alice Capsey. The ball after sweeping Amelia Kerr very fine for four, she tried to launch a straight six against the wind and dragged the ball to Maddy Green at long on. Capsey played pretty well to make 25 from 22 balls, though at times her strokeplay felt a bit forced.

7th over: England 38-1 (Wyatt 13, Capsey 19) On comes the left-arm spinner Fran Jonas. Capsey is taking the lead in this partnership; she cuts and reverse-pulls consecutive deliveries to deep point for two. But overall it’s another pretty good over for New Zealand, five from it. This game is in the balance.

6th over: England 33-1 (Wyatt 12, Capsey 15) Rosemary Mair, who set the tone for this bowling performance with an exemplary first over, returns to the attack. Mair’s line is again very tight, but her last ball is fractionally wide and Capsey steers it past backward point for four. Beautifully played.

5th over: England 27-1 (Wyatt 11, Capsey 10) Capsey hooks Tahuhu for four, then flicks a loose delivery very fine for another boundary. She’s such a dangerous player, whose brazen aggression can mess with a bowler’s mind, line and length.

England need 110 from 90 balls.

4th over: England 18-1 (Wyatt 11, Capsey 1) Capsey survives a stumping chance! She charged Kerr, missed and was a long way out of her crease when the ball bounced out of Gaze’s gloves. It wasn a slightly awkward stumping – the ball kicked a bit and she probably saw it late – but she would usually manage it.

3rd over: England 16-1 (Wyatt 10, Capsey 0) That was the last ball of the over.

Wyatt blasts the new bowler Tahuhu back over her head for … two. It would have been four but the ball stopped dead just inside the boundary. That was a bit weird.

New Zealand have started well with the ball. Tahuhu gets one to burst from a length to hit Wyatt on the arm – and then she takes the big wicket! Bouchier tried to glide to third man but got it too fine and Izzy Gaze took a comfortable catch. A tame end to a marvellous series.

2nd over: England 9-0 (Bouchier 6, Wyatt 3) Jess Kerr’s first ball bounces extravagantly past the face of a surprised Bouchier, who looks at the pitch with a smile.

When Kerr goes fuller, Bouchier chips stylishly over mid-off for the first boundary of the innings. That’s another very eye-catching stroke. Wyatt gets her first runs with a mistimed ramp past the keeper for three. I can’t type the word ‘ramp’ without hearing Richie Aprile’s voice; I guess some people are just lucky in life.

1st over: England 1-0 (Bouchier 1, Wyatt 0) An excellent first over from Mair costs just one run, thick-edged wide of slip by Bouchier. Wyatt was beaten outside off stump, trying to cut her first delivery.

After a quick turnaround, here come the players. Rosemary Mair will open the bowling to Maia Bouchier.

Source: theguardian.com