Cape Town - England’s Sarah Taylor played a splendid innings of 74* from 51 balls to set up the visitors’ 15-run victory over the Momentum Proteas at Boland Park Stadium in Paarl on Thursday.
Taylor took England from 81/5 in the 11th over to 147/7 at the end of their innings after they were put in to bat first by the hosts. Her unbeaten score included 11 boundaries, most of which were hit at the back-end of the innings to get her side to its solid total.
South Africa’s bowlers got off to a good start, removing Tammy Beaumont, Charlotte Edwards and Amy Jones cheaply for four, 13 and none respectively. Moseline Daniels and Dané van Niekerk led the attack and captured two wickets each, while Masabata Klaas, Chloe Tryon and Shabnim Ismail took one. Heather Knight (18), Georgia Elwiss (18) and Anya Shrubsole (10) were the only other batters to reach double figures.
The Proteas’ batting response got off to a solid start with a 96-run opening stand that lasted just shy of 15 overs between Van Niekerk and Trisha Chetty (46). Van Niekerk struck 52 runs from just 49 balls before her dismissal at the hands of Shrubsole off the second-last ball of the 15th over. Chetty followed just three balls later, trapped lbw by Gunn.
The hosts needed a power hitter to catch them up to the required run rate, which was rapidly escalating, but they lost four wickets in as many overs (Marizanne Kapp (6), Lizelle Lee (8), Mignon du Preez (5) and Chloe Tryon (5)) to make it impossible for the remaining batters – Suné Luus (5*) and Dinesha Devnarain (1*) to catch up.
Coach, Hilton Moreeng does not believe that all is lost. He firmly backs his side to bounce back in tomorrow’s televised second match.
“When you look at the way we started, we played really good cricket, but lack of concentration at times allowed England to get away from us,” he said. “We have another game tomorrow and we need to pick ourselves up and get on with the series. We are not happy with the end result, I think we could have done better and everyone knows that, but I know we can level the series at Newlands tomorrow.”