The problem with watching so much cricket, if I can call it a problem is that I struggle to keep up with writing about it. I’ve come home today after a week away watching England play at Old Trafford and Essex at Scarborough. Essex managed to beat Yorkshire by 8 wickets in 2 days so I find myself with a free evening to look back at the Women’s World Cup Final.
I’d bought my ticket for the final at Lords as soon as they came out and was therefore thrilled to be seeing England get through, they were joined by India, the team who’d beaten them in their first game in the tournament.
India had beaten Australia in their semi-final with Harmanpreet Kaur scoring an incredible 171 runs from 115 balls! England had go past South Africa winning a tight match with 2 balls of their 50 remaining.
Therefore it felt that India were going into the final on a high. I arrived early at Lords to find a lively ground, there were far more women and far more children than I’m used to seeing at international matches which was great! Apart from having to queue for the toilets, rare at cricket!
I’m coming to this very much after the fact so hmm not going to write a full report, England batted first and were restricted by a very tight bowling unit to 228 for 7. Tammy Beaumont scored 23 runs to keep her at the top of the runs scored table for the tournament. Sarah Taylor with 45 and Natalie Sciver with 51 top scored for the home team on the day.
India had scored 281 runs in 42.1 overs in their semi-final, the 228 didn’t feel enough to win the trophy., however Anya Shrubsole had other plans. She took the wicket of Smriti Mandhana in the 2nd over and was to take a further 5 in dramatic fashion!
The Indian opener Poonam Raut top scored with a very entertaining 86 putting her team in a strong position. In the 43rd over India were 191 for 3 needing a mere 38 to win with plenty of wickets in hand. Shrubsole started her wicket fest taking the key wicket of Raut, she deserved a century in the final, she’s batted so well, but it wasn’t to be.
Alex Hartley took the wicket of Devi in the 44th over before Shrubsole demolished the India batting line up, not only did she take a further 4 wickets, 2 in the 45th over and 2 in the 49th she also ran out the very promising young Pandey. Jenny Gunn had dropped a simple catch and it seemed she may have dropped the world cup, but Shrubsole ensured that England won by a very narrow 9 runs. Shrubsole finished with figures of 6 for 46!
This was a truly entertaining game of cricket, the atmosphere was like no other I’ve experienced at Lords, my one regret was that the presence in the pavilion was sparse, other than that this was a memorable day enjoyed by the near capacity crowd.
To top off a wonderful day for many, each 16 year old and under was given a free cricket bat and ball set to take home. And it was clear that in the words of England captain Heather Knight ‘There’s never been a better time to be a woman in cricket’
England Cricket – World Cup Winners!