20 March 2022

England scrape home to beat hosts New Zealand at Women’s World Cup

20 March 2022

England have improved their chances of playing in the Women’s World Cup semi-finals after squeaking home with a one-wicket victory over New Zealand in Auckland.

The visitors won the toss and opted to bowl at Eden Park, with Manchester Originals duo Sophie Ecclestone and Kate Cross each taking three wickets and Charlie Dean collecting a pair as New Zealand made 203 across 48.5 overs.

Natalie Sciver top-scored with 61 as England took just 47.2 overs to amass 204, with captain Heather Knight scoring 42 and Dean left to close with veteran Anya Shrubsole, who roared with delight after knocking the winning single.

Sciver said in comments carried by The Guardian: “It’s crazy we got over the line when we probably should not have. I am in shock, there have been so many close games in this tournament.

“I knew I had to do most of the scoring and stay out there for a long time. It was tough bowling in the windy conditions, and a difficult wicket to find consistency.”

England started poorly with losses to Australia, the West Indies and South Africa before a change of fortunes with victories over India and now New Zealand.

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