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Next stop - Australia

Posted in England Women

Jenny Gunn

After a long summer of rain, Jenny Gunn is off to play this winter in Australia

Our one and only Twenty20 against India was called off without a ball being bowled. Again we had another indoor session - so much for the Indian summer they forecasted back in May!

On September 6th it was still raining as we made the long drive from Taunton to Arundel. We thought it would take us around three hours but due to traffic and heavy rain we arrived at the hotel in Brighton five hours after leaving Somerset.

Having already won the series we were now looking for a 5-0 whitewash. Arriving at the ground we were told to hold fire as the overnight rain left the square pretty wet. There was to be an inspection at 12.30 which gave some of the team a chance to walk down to the local village to keep us entertained until we were told further.

The umpires were walking out to the middle to take a look and right at that moment the heavens opened once again which meant more sitting around. The groundsmen did a great job and after sitting around for six hours we finally got underway around 4pm.

The game was reduced to 23 overs per side and India, after being put in, were positive up front and were going quite well before some classic spin bowling from Holly [Colvin] once again turned the game for us. She bowled five overs to take 3-17 - not a bad way to mark your birthday.

We also managed to pick up three runs out with some sharp fielding, the best being Lottie [Charlotte Edwards] who picked up one handed, spun and with one stump to aim at knocked it down. This was still not enough to win Jack’s fielding award which went to the ever reliable Lydia Greenway. India finished on 90 for seven.

We set about our run chase with it getting darker as each over passed. We knew it would be a challenging total but one we were confident of chasing down. However, we were quickly reduced to 14 for two with both of our openers dismissed.

Lottie and Tayls [Claire Taylor] once again steadied the ship and managed a partnership of 46 before our captain was out LBW.

Tayls and Lydia were going well but with it getting so dark, I was quite nervous as I was next in. I was quite happy when Tayls brought up her 50 and finished the game off with a few balls left.

This took us to 4-0 and stretched our unbeaten run this summer to 11 games with only one more match to play.

The next day we had a night training session as our last ODI was to be a day-night match. There was a real buzz at training and everyone was excited about the next game.

We were doing slip catching which is quite difficult as you need to try and keep your cap under the lights, otherwise you will lose the ball. I think Jack loves this drill but we thought we were going to get killed with balls flying past our heads. We got there in the end and caught everything that came at us. It was catch it or get smashed!

After quite a relaxing morning we headed to the ground at 12.30pm to have a bit of lunch and then to get onto the ground for a warm up. We had just done our lap and were performing our stretches when the rain returned.

We were actually off for quite a while which gave Squirt [Sarah Taylor] the chance to teach the whole team some dance which I must say looks pretty good when the team does it together.

After a couple of hours we were back on the field warming up again. We managed to start the game and Nunny [Katherine Brunt] was unlucky not to get a wicket with her first ball of the game. We managed four overs before the rain returned and the game was eventually called off. This meant we had to settle for a 4-0 series win and not the whitewash we were looking for, but we were still happy with our summer.

Nunny received the player of the series for her consistent performances and for such a good comeback after being out of the game for so long with back injuries.

It was strange that two of our players had to rush off straight after the game but Lottie and Tayls were on a flight to Dubai first thing in the morning as they were both nominated for the ICC Women’s Cricketer of the Year award. It was a great effort to have two England players in there and I have to say well done to Lottie who actually won the award.

I finally got home on September 10th. It was actually quite nice to be home but then as the days go on you get a bit lost and you start to miss everyone from tour.

I now have a week of rest before I fly to Australia for another season out there. Hopefully I will see some sun as I'm starting to forget what it looks like!