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Given a final focus

Posted in England Women

We left England on January 17, which feels like ages ago now and we could not have timed it better. One more day and we may have been snowed in!

On arriving in Mumbai we embarked on and five and half hour coach journey, a journey that was supposed to take three hours, to Pune for our nine day training camp. Only feared for my life twice when we were going uphill in the mountains with a massive drop either side!

It was great to be training outside and with either nets, middle practice or matches amongst ourselves we were kept busy. Our net bowlers enjoyed testing us with their spin, and all the variety of balls they could muster. So all in all a good camp.

On checking out of the hotel in Pune I was presented with a bill for six smoothies and seven coffees; now I don’t drink hot drinks and didn’t have a smoothie in all the time we were in Pune so someone was playing silly buggers! All I can say is they better watch out when I found out who it was, two can play at that game.

We won our first warm-up game by 49 runs against South Africa which saw our in-form captain hit 78 and Lydia and Heather chip in with decent contributions as we posted a decent score of 270. We bowled well, restricting them from scoring and were happy to take a win.

Before we knew it our alarms were going off at 6am for our second and final warm-up game the next day, this time against New Zealand. It was strange to be leaving for a cricket match in the dark, although being a morning person it wasn’t too bad for me getting up, unlike the later risers in the squad.

Bowling first we realised quickly how flat the wicket was and keeping them down to below 250 was going to be a challenge. Once a partnership was made it was very hard to get the batters out. But then Danielle Hazell came on and turned the ball (yes she did actually turn the ball) and in a spell of six overs she took five wickets for just 18 runs.

This helped us keep them down to 224 which we were happy about chasing. Despite another good knock from Lydia and the bottom order really kicking on towards the end we were 14 runs short. Whilst disappointed to lose there are positives we will take from the performance, it really focussed us for our last training session before our first group game against Sri Lanka.

Our reply didn't get off to the best of starts losing both openers when we had 25 on the board. Taylor and Greenway rebuild but losing wickets going into the power play cost us. We kicked on towards the end but having not many wickets in hand provided us with a struggle and we ended losing by 14 runs.

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