Sciver-Brunt ton helps England seal Pakistan ODI series

Published May 30, 2024
CHELMSFORD: England batter Nat Sciver-Brunt plays a shot as Pakistan wicket-keeper Najiha Alvi looks on during the third women’s One-day International at the County Ground on Wednesday.—Reuters
CHELMSFORD: England batter Nat Sciver-Brunt plays a shot as Pakistan wicket-keeper Najiha Alvi looks on during the third women’s One-day International at the County Ground on Wednesday.—Reuters

CHELMSFORD: Nat Sciver-Brunt smashed an unbeaten century as England women secured a resounding 178-run victory against Pakistan in the third and final One-day International to seal the series 2-0 at the County Ground on Wednesday.

Pakistan had lost the first one-dayer by 37 runs after receiving a 3-0 thrashing in the preceding Twenty20 International series.

Their defeat in the one-day series, which was played as part of the 2022-25 cycle of the ICC Women’s Championship, meant Pakistan may well miss out on the direct qualification for next year’s World Cup.

Opting to bat first, England Women amassed a formidable total of 302-5 in their allotted 50 overs, thanks to a stellar show from Sciver-Brunt. The right-hander played a magnificent knock, scoring 124 runs off 117 balls, including 14 boundaries and two sixes, to anchor the innings.

Tammy Beaumont and Maia Bouchier opened the batting for England. Beaumont was dismissed early for 11 ru­ns by pacer Fatima Sana. Bouchier, looking in fine form, scored 34 off 33 balls before falling to Diana Baig’s delivery. Captain Heather Knight was trapped leg before wicket by Umm-e-Hani for 12 runs, leaving England at 70-3.

However, a crucial partnership between Sciver-Brunt and Danni Wyatt (44 off 42 balls) steadied the innings. Wyatt was caught by Sidra Amin off Nida Dar, but Amy Jones (27) and Alice Capsey (39 not out) provided solid support to Sciver-Brunt, propelling England to an imposing total.

Pakistan’s bowlers had a challenging day, with Umm-e-Hani emerging as the most successful, claiming two wickets for 47 runs. Diana, Nida and Fatima each took one wicket but struggled to contain the run flow.

In reply, Pakistan faltered under the pressure of a daunting target. Lauren Bell struck early, removing Sadaf Shamas for two and Sidra Amin for 10. Muneeba Ali offered some resistance with a well-compiled 47 off 55 balls, but she found little support from the other end.

The middle order crumbled, with Ayesha Zafar (13), Najiha Alvi (6), and Aliya Riaz (36) unable to build significant partnerships.

Sciver-Brunt continued her all-round excellence, picking up two wickets for 11 runs. Sophie Ecclestone was particularly effective, claiming three wickets for 15 runs, while Kate Cross, Bell, and Charlie Dean each contributed with a wicket.

Pakistan’s lower order collapsed, and with Nida absent due to a hamstring injury that she picked up during the match, they were bowled out for a meager 124 in 29.1 overs, falling well short of the target.

Brief scores:

ENGLAND 302-5 in 50 overs (Nat Sciver-Brunt 124 not out, Maia Bouchier 34, Danni Wyatt 44; Umm-e-Hani 2-47, Diana Baig 1-60); PAKISTAN 124 in 29.1 overs (Muneeba Ali 47, Aliya Riaz 36; Sophie Ecclestone 3-15, Nat Sciver-Brunt 2-11).

Published in Dawn, May 30th, 2024

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