SportsWomen's World Cup: England's hopes of reaching the semi-finals remain intact, beat...

Women’s World Cup: England’s hopes of reaching the semi-finals remain intact, beat New Zealand by one wicket in a thrilling match

Auckland: Defending champions England kept semi-final hopes alive with a one-wicket win over hosts New Zealand in a thrilling league stage match of the ICC Women’s World Cup on Sunday. Veteran middle-order batsman Maddy Green was the top scorer for New Zealand with an unbeaten 52 while captain Sophie Devine contributed 41 runs. But even after this, England bundled out the hosts for 203 runs at Eden Park. England pacer Kate Cross (3/35) and star spinner Sophie Ecclestone (3/41) took six wickets while spinner Charlie Dean (2/36) took two wickets.
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All-rounder Natalie Siever (61 runs) handled the innings with a half-century but the English team reached 196 for 9 within five overs from a good position of 176 for five. Due to this, the team had almost reached the verge of defeat from a position of victory. But Anya Shrubsole (07) and Charlie Dean (0) kept their patience and took England to the target.

This is England’s second consecutive win after losing the first three matches. With this win, England’s team remains in the race for the semi-finals. It has removed New Zealand from fifth place. India, England and New Zealand each have four points. India and England have two matches left while New Zealand have only one match left.

England did not allow New Zealand to score big scores with the brilliant performance of their spinners. After this his top order started aggressively chasing 204 runs. Opener Danny Watt (12) fell victim to Jess Kerr while Tammy Beaumont (25) was clean bowled by Lee Tahuhu (1 for 18).
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Captain Heather Knight made 42 off 53 balls but was dismissed lbw in the 23rd over by Frankie McKay. Wicketkeeper Amy Jones (01) also continued to move. Siever then put on a crucial 70-run partnership with Sophie Dunkley (33) to ensure England’s victory. After this, the New Zealand bowlers came back by taking wickets continuously and increased the pressure on England.

Earlier, after being invited to bat, New Zealand were heading for a one-time gigantic score with Devin scoring runs at will and Amelia Kerr (24) standing by. However, Devin had to retire hurt in the 15th over due to a back problem and Amelia Kerr became the first victim of Charlotte Dean (2 for 36) for 24. Then England came back well in the middle overs.

Experienced M Satterthwaite (24) and Green displayed belligerent spirit but England did well in the field to run out two players. However, England’s fielding was poor in the previous matches. Satterthwaite was lbw by Dean, then Krauss and Ecclestone finished New Zealand’s innings early by dismissing the tail batsmen.