The second round of the Charlotte Edwards Cup saw three wickets for an England hopeful, all-round heroics from another, red rose triumphing over white and a dramatic, last-ball finish as two teams maintained their 100 per cent record.
Thunder v Diamonds, an updated take on one of the oldest of rivalries, went the way of Thunder with seamer Laura Jackson having a day to remember, dismissing England’s Lauren Winfield-Hill and Nat Sciver to help her side to a dominant 56-run victory in Sale.
Thunder openers Emma Lamb (50) and Georgie Boyce (65) had earlier put on 95 for the first wicket, and Diamonds, despite the best efforts of Katie Levick (4-22), weren’t able to get close in their pursuit of Thunder’s 148.
In Guildford, Central Sparks made it two wins from two to top Group A with Issy Wong demonstrating some of the all-round form which saw her smash a rapid 90 in county cricket for Warwickshire recently.
Wong, in a new role as an opener, hit a 28-ball 45 as Sparks set 170 for South East Stars to chase. She then recorded tidy figures of 4-0-14-1, and Grace Potts picked up four wickets, to take Sparks to the win.
Wong’s fellow England A seamer Lauren Bell put her hand up for international selection with arguably the stand-out bowling performance of the day, 4-1-12-3 with the Lightning top three all falling to the tall seamer.
Bell’s wickets, as well as runs for Maia Bouchier (41) and three wickets for Charlie Dean mean Vipers – like Sparks – maintain their 100% record to top Group B.
🗣️ 'I said to Anya I'd commit to everything, I was happy with how I bowled tonight'— Southern Vipers (@VipersKSL) May 18, 2022
Lauren Bell demolished the Lightning top order with late swing as she took 3-12 in a 31-run victory under the lights ⭐
📰 Full report & reaction ▶️ https://t.co/zt4uKNIVdk#BewareTheVipers 🐍 pic.twitter.com/QnuDdpU02u
The final game of the day was the most dramatic, settled only on the last ball. Sunrisers thought they had done enough to take their first victory of the campaign after setting Western Storm 160 to win under the lights at Chelmsford; young opening batter Grace Scrivens the pick of the card with a 42-ball 56.
And at 71-5 at the halfway point of the chase it looked as if Sunrisers would get there but Storm’s middle order rallied to get them close. With 15 runs needed off the final over, Alex Griffiths kept her team in the hunt with a six off the first ball of the over. Griffiths and Sophia Smale, on debut, chipped away but with three needed off the last ball it looked like they’d fall just short.
Tragically for Sunrisers, with the Storm duo running hard for what would have been a match-tying second run, the throw from long-on evaded the wicket-keeper and the fielders backing up to roll agonisingly for four overthrows, signalling a dramatic win for Western Storm.
All eight sides are back in action this weekend. Find out more about the competition here, including how to follow.