The problem with having lots of England players is that when they are away on international duty you are suddenly a very different team, as Sussex discovered against Essex this weekend in Div 2 of the Women’s County Championship. Without Sarah Taylor, Georgia Elwiss or Danni Wyatt, Sussex were bowled out for 114 after Essex had posted 159-9.
Lauren Bell (36) dug Berkshire out of a horrible hole (again!) against Surrey – from 56-5 they recovered to post 149-9; but Surrey cruised to victory thanks to half-centuries from Kirstie White (58) and Aylish Cranstone (52).
For Wales, Rachel Priest smacked fifteen 4s and one 6, for 88 off 82 balls, as they put Derbyshire to the sword at Panteg CC.
Finally, down in Exeter, Devon had a bit of a scare after being bowled out for 129 against Northants; but were rescued by Felicity Leydon-Davis, who took 5-8 in just 4 overs as Northants were bowled out for 88.
Sussex’s defeat has blown the promotion race wide open. Essex play Derbyshire and Wales next weekend, and two wins would put them in a very strong position, with everyone else having already lost at least one game; whilst Berkshire will be looking try to post maximum bonus points against the bottom two sides, as they look to get things back on track before hosting Sussex in their final match the week after, which could end up in effect being a play-off.