Guha pleased to make her mark
ECBtv spoke to Isa Guha and Claire Taylor after the match at Taunton - watch the video in full above
Isa Guha was understandably happy after marking her late call-up to the England women's team with a fine bowling performance in the comprehensive ICC World Twenty20 victory over Sri Lanka.
Guha was named as 12th man for the match at Taunton, but was drafted in to the side following a freak injury to Katherine Brunt in the warm-up.
Brunt was struck in the face by a ball during a fielding drill and taken to hospital with a suspected fractured cheekbone.
Thankfully, X-rays revealed no break but in the meantime Guha stepped in with outstanding figures of 2-4 from four overs as England restricted Sri Lanka to 69 for eight chasing 141 to win.
“We seem to have a habit of people getting injured in the warm-up, but as 12th man you’ve always got to be ready and prepared,” Guha told ECBtv.
“Anyone can get injured at the last minute and hopefully someone can come in and do their job and that’s what I tried to do.
“Fortunately, the wicket suited my bowling and I just tried to bowl the lengths I know I can bowl. Luckily, I got a couple of wickets and stemmed the flow of runs.
“I was backed up by Nicky Shaw at the other end. Then the spinners came on and did a really good job and we never really let them get away.”
Guha explained how Brunt suffered her injury, adding: “In the fielding warm-up one of the balls was thrown at the stumps and it just popped up as Katherine was backing up and hit her in the face.
“She was rushed off to hospital but thankfully she’s alright. She’s got a big bruise on her face but nothing’s broken.”
England are now through to the semi-finals and look set to meet Australia on Friday, but Guha insists the team is fully focussed on their final group game against Pakistan.
“We want to put in another clinical performance and then we can start thinking about the semis,” she said. “We don’t want to think too far ahead just yet.”
Mark Lane’s side had Claire Taylor to thank for their total of 140 for seven, the Wisden Cricketer of the Year holding the innings together with a superb unbeaten 75 from 54 balls.
Taylor accelerated superbly at the end of the innings, hitting eight fours from her final 14 deliveries, but admitted she took a while to find her feet against some disciplined Sri Lanka bowling.
“Fair play to Sri Lanka, they came out and bowled really well,” she said.
“Early in the innings it was quite hard to hit square of the wicket because there wasn’t any bounce from their bowling or the pitch. Everything had to go straight down the ground.
“It wasn’t until later on when I felt much more ‘in’ that I could free my arms and start to move the field around.”
The rest of England’s batting line-up struggled to fire, with wickets falling at regular intervals throughout the innings.
“It’s part and parcel of the Twenty20 game,” Taylor added. “There’s pressure on people to score as soon as they come in.
“They had been told to try and strike boundaries as soon as they got there and I think that’s quite a difficult thing to do on a pitch that’s wearing.
“In the end 140 turned out to be a really competitive score but against better teams I think we’ve got to bat better than that.
“Hopefully, they’ll get another chance against Pakistan and they’ll be able to score some runs and build some confidence because we need eight out of 11 batsmen confident and in form for the semi-final if we’re going to progress.”