Brunt goes back to basics
You can watch Katherine Brunt's video interview with ECBtv at Lord's in full above
England’s match-winner Katherine Brunt revealed a couple of early morning coaching sessions helped her put right her bowling action in time for the ICC Women’s World Twenty20 final.
The right-arm swing bowler admitted she had been struggling in the build-up to the final, where she took career-best international Twenty20 figures of 3-6 in four overs.
That destructive yet economical spell left New Zealand teetering at 23 for four and they never recovered, slumping to 85 all out from 20 overs.
England’s Taylors, Sarah and Claire, then combined to seal victory by six wickets with three overs to spare at Lord’s.
Brunt’s performance is all the more remarkable considering a week earlier she was taken to hospital with a suspected fractured cheekbone, following a freak warm-up accident in a fielding drill in Taunton.
That left her with a nasty bruise under right eye and ruled her out of England’s group games against Sri Lanka and Pakistan.
She returned for Friday’s sem-final victory over Australia at The Oval, although the 23-year-old conceded 1-39 in four overs.
“It did knock my confidence,” she told ecb.co.uk. “I had a few days off which doesn’t help. You like to keep going, keep you arm turning over.
“Also (I had) a little bit of a leg niggle but I just thought I had lost my shape away which is very natural to me and we’ve also been playing on some great batting tracks.
“The Oval is a brilliant batting track and the conditions didn’t really suit my bowling. When the conditions do suit you, we all tend to raise our game and bowl and field like what is natural to us - to a high standard.”
Brunt, who swung the ball prodigiously this morning, added: “Yesterday morning and this morning I’ve been working closely with my one-to-one coach Paul Shaw and our two coaches Mark Lane and Jack Birkenshaw.
“We were just trying to get my rhythm going again and it came one. I was getting the ball to shape away nicely and so I came into this game with a lot of confidence.
“We all love playing at Lord’s and luckily for us, for all our bowlers, it paid off and everybody bowled fantastically.”
Yorkshirewoman Brunt acknowledged the importance of bowling first to make the most of the 10.30am BST start.
Overcast conditions made Charlotte Edwards’ decision after winning the toss straightforward, although White Ferns skipper Aimee Watkins revealed she would have chosen to bat first.
“We went over to the Nursery Ground and we bowled a few balls and we were all saying to each other we need to bowl this morning and set the tone for the game,” Brunt continued.
“We were all fired up and ready for it so we were delighted with the result of the toss.”
Although Brunt took the plaudits, there were also crucial contributions from fellow seamers Nicky Shaw and Jenny Gunn, who took two wickets apiece.
Spinners Laura Marsh, who dismissed the dangerous Suzie Bates in the first over, and Holly Colvin also conceded only 16 each their from a combined eight overs.
Claire Taylor’s unbeaten 39 then calmed any nerves after Sarah Taylor’s wicket left England 39 for two.
“We knew that we had kept them to a very low score but we also know that it’s very nice to bowl on at Lord’s,” Brunt said.
“When you’re chasing a total to win a world cup final it’s probably one of the most nerve-wracking things you ever do.
“We knew we had to keep up with the run rate and play sensible cricket. We didn’t really need to do anything stupid.
“A few good balls here and there and it changes the game. We were still very, very confident.”