Short Thoughts: KSL Diamonds v Lightning

A couple of standout performances today from two overseas stars – Sophie Devine (52) with the bat, and Dane van Niekerk (4 overs for 13) with the ball – will get the plaudits, but it was a team effort which won the Lightning this match.

The batting contributions of two county players – Eve Jones (12 off 12) and Paige Scholfield (13 off 9) added 25 critical runs at the end of their innings, which not only created a much more “pressure” score for the Diamonds to chase, but also ultimately grabbed the bonus point too.

Then the Lightning were excellent in the field – Georgia Elwiss in particular saving run after run between extra cover and mid off.

The Diamonds meanwhile let the pressure get to them after a good start – they were going at 10 an over initially, but this rapidly evaporated. Lauren Winfield can have no real complaints about her run out… though she did, very publically; and it is difficult to believe that her frustration didn’t actually add to the pressure on the batsmen that followed her in.. and out again!

Wickets begat wickets and eventually, by about the start of the 16th over, Diamonds tails were really drooping – they had given up and it was only a matter of whether they would get enough to deny the Lightning the bonus point; which they definitively failed to do – falling 17 runs short of even that target.

Afterwards Sophie Devine had this to say:

“I was fairly nervous – coming off a winter in New Zealand you are always a little bit scratchy, with not playing much outdoors. We’ve had a couple of warm up games, but in the first real hit-out it is nice to get some runs on the board, although we were probably 15 or 20 runs short. It probably didn’t help when I ran out Ellyse Perry, and I’m sure I’ll cop that, but we bowled fantastically well. Yorkshire came out really hard at us, so it was a great team effort to peg it back in the middle overs and I thought [Becky] Grundy was outstanding – she obviously fires-up which is motivating, being in the field with someone who is so passionate.”

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3 thoughts on “Short Thoughts: KSL Diamonds v Lightning

  1. Can add Amy Jones to that list absolutely brilliant behind the stumps in particular the ‘delayed’ stumping of Ismail.

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  2. It sounded like a bad tempered game at times. I wonder if there will be any repercussions from the officials? From what she said afterwards Blackwell certainly seemed to want the attitude to stop, and pretty quick. Turn that aggression into runs and wickets!

    Good that Elwiss fielded well, because from what I’ve seen that’s the weakest part of the game of a player who otherwise seems to excel at everything.

    I know a lot of people predicted that Lightning would win and I thought Diamonds would maybe edge it, but it certainly did not go down the way most people expected. I think we’ll see lower scores in the tournament proper than in the warm ups as the pressure begins to tell. Innings like Devine’s may be a rarity rather than commonplace.

    It was the case that Lightning’s batting was good and their bowling excellent, whilst Diamonds bowling was good but their batting was fairly poor. Aussie imports Mooney and Blackwell were supposed to be the linchpins but after they both got out early, there was not a lot of chance to chase over 100. Maybe Diamonds were a bit rash – and need to try and play themselves in a bit more. This tactic can work quite well. 130 could have been chased down if they were 30-0 after 8-10 overs. It is possible to score 100+ in the last 10-12 overs if you keep wickets in hand.

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  3. A good start, from what I could tell on the radio!

    Given that one of the express aims of the tournament is to bridge the gap from County to International cricket, I had a nag in the back of my mind that we would see all the “star names” batting in the top six and doing all the bowling, thereby negating the benefits on the “second string” players.

    To a point this is inevitable – nobody would acquire Ellyse Perry to bat at nine and field at fine leg for 20 overs – but the first game was actually fairly encouraging in this respect, particularly from the Diamonds – two “lesser lights” in their top three, and some overs from Thompson and Levick. Lighthing less so. Only Grundy at 11 giving way in the batting order, and no overs from outside the big names.

    Obviously it’s a difficult balance when there is an imperative to win games, and no doubt it will be said that simply spending time in an environment with so many top class players will rub off on others, but I hope we will see some of those we don’t know so much about given a chance… and taking it.

    From a personal point of view, a real shame to see Worcestershire’s Thea Brookes run out without facing a ball. Daggers put the blame squarely on Eve Jones (it happens, that’s all), but that’s mot much consolation to Thea, I’m sure. Hope she gets more opportunities.

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