MATCH REPORT: Yorkshire Back To Win(field)ing Ways Against Berkshire

After their shock loss to Surrey last time out, defending county champions Yorkshire got their season back on track with a fairly straightforward win against Berkshire at Finchampstead Cricket Club.

Chasing 155, Yorkshire got off to a strong start, as Lauren Winfield (76) and Hollie Armitage (19) put on 76 for the first wicket. As the scorecard suggests, Winfield was dominant, despite an excellent opening bowling spell from Berkshire’s 15-year-old prodigy Lauren Bell, who attacked the batsmen with pace and movement off the pitch into the right handers.

In the end it was Bell who helped to break the opening partnership, taking a cool catch to dismiss Armitage, as she top-edged Fi Morris to point. Elise Good (19) then joined her skipper to take Yorkshire past the hundred mark.

From 112-1 Yorkshire wobbled slightly, losing 5-12, before Hania Thompson (18*) and Dani Hazell (9*) steadied the ship to carry them home.

Earlier in the day, Berkshire captain Heather Knight had won the toss and elected to bat on what looked like an interesting pitch.

Berkshire made a slow start, with Katherine Brunt causing all sorts of problems steaming in down the hill, making even Heather Knight look foolish on a couple of occasions; so after 10 overs, Berkshire were just 30-1 and Yorkshire looked well on top.

Knight went on to make 65, before chipping Dani Hazell to deep midwicket where she was caught by Hayley Martinus, and Carla Rudd also played nicely for 36 – her highest ever score in senior county cricket; but no other Berkshire batsman made it into double figures, and they were eventually bowled out for a below-par 155 in the 45th over.

Afterwards, Yorkshire captain Lauren Winfield spoke to CRICKETher, reflecting upon her own performance, and then going on to credit her bowlers for doing the hard work up front:

“I feel pretty good at the minute – I’m batting pretty well. It would have been nice to be there not out at the end, and I probably gave it away once I got in; but it’s just nice to get over the line after the loss against Surrey a couple of weeks ago.”

“Katherine [Brunt] bowled really well for us – we wanted her to hit that hard line outside off stump and she did that really well with catchers in. People see Katherine and Spraggy [Laura Spragg] as a threat, so they generally try to play them off in the first 10; but we back our spinners in the middle to dry them out and squeeze pressure on in the next 20 or 30 overs and bring wickets – that’s what we’ve done well in the past and we managed to do it again today.”