England seal South Africa semi
15 July 2017 National Sport
England will play South Africa in the Women’s World Cup semi-finals after a 92-run win over West Indies in Bristol secured top spot in the group.
Captain Heather Knight (67) top scored for England and Jenny Gunn (31no) and Laura Marsh (24no) added 48 for the eighth wicket as the hosts stuttered to 220-7 after struggling to contend with West Indies spinners Afy Fletcher (3-33) and Anisa Mohammed (1-32).
However, that total proved ample as Natalie Sciver (3-3) helped limit Windies to 128-9 to secure Knight’s side a sixth straight victory and a last-four showdown with the Proteas, the side they downed by 68 runs in Bristol on July 5, at the same venue on Tuesday, live on Sky Sports 4 and Sky Sports Mix.
Sarah Taylor smashed 147 against South Africa in the group stage but she and Natalie Sciver scored nought against West Indies as the hosts slumped to 105-5.
Sciver – three days after and – was bowled by Fletcher second ball looking to clip through midwicket, while Taylor flashed Deandra Dottin to slip to exit for a golden duck.
Leg-spinner Fletcher also had Tammy Beaumont (42) and Fran Wilson (5) caught behind by wicketkeeper Merissa Aguilleira – Beaumont out ramping onto her helmet and Wilson dismissed on review with Ultra-Edge proving she cue-ended a sweep shot.
Wilson’s departure, from the final ball of the 26th over, saw England lose three wickets for 14 runs, but Knight continued to battle away, albeit that she would have been given out lbw for 39 had West Indies opted to review when Fletcher pinged her on the pad.
Knight – supported by Katherine Brunt (14) before the latter was stumped off Mohammed advancing down the track- brought up her 13th ODI fifty from 76 deliveries before she was bowled through the gate by Hayley Matthews.
But Gunn and Marsh finished with a flourish by sharing the highest partnership of the innings, putting on one more run that Beaumont and Lauren Winfield (11) had for the first wicket – Gunn also hitting the only six of her side’s knock, off Stafanie Taylor.
Matthews suffered a bout of cramp as she bowled the final over of England’s innings but appeared to have shaken that off when she batted, muscling Marsh over long-on for a maximum.
However, a mix-up with opening partner Kycia Knight (17) led to the latter being run out by the electric Wilson at backward point, while Matthews also failed to encourage Stafanie Taylor (0) to review her lbw dismissal against Marsh – ball-tracking showing the delivery would have slid past leg stump.
Matthews (29) opted to review her own lbw dismissal, against Alex Hartley, but to no avail, with her departure triggering a collapse of 6-36 – Sciver taking two wickets in her first over, thanks in part to an excellent running catch at deep backward square by Beaumont to dismiss Chedean Nation (23).
Knight, Brunt and Anya Shrubsole also picked up wickets as seven West Indies players fell lbw –