Surrey made it from 2 from 2 this weekend in a clinical win against Northants at the Northamptonshire County Ground, beating their Division 2 opponents by 87 runs.
Bryony Smith led the charge, making 52 from 42 balls in an innings that will surely help to make the case for her return to the top of the order for Surrey Stars in this year’s Kia Super League.
“Our aim was to win both these 2 games convincingly and get as many bonus points as possible to help our promotion chances,” Smith told CRICKETher after close of play.
“I’ve had a few rough games so it was good the last few days to spend some time in the middle and get some runs on the board.”
“I’m looking ahead to the Super League to dominate in that back at the top of the order. The aim for me [for Surrey Stars] is to open again.”
The two sides were fortunate to get in a game at all after torrential rain fell overnight, leaving the original pitch unplayable due to moisture in the bowler’s run-up. But, after some creative conferring with the groundsmen, the game was moved across to a neighbouring wicket and a 29-overs-a-side match ensued, commencing at 3.30pm.
After winning the toss and putting Surrey in, the Northants bowlers looked dangerous early on, with Kirstie White surviving a convincing appeal for caught behind off Meera Patel’s first ball of the day, and Smith dropped by Alicia Presland off her own bowling after skying it when on just 9*.
The pair eventually added 89 for the first wicket as Smith in particular punished some short bowling, racking up 8 fours, 3 of which were clubbed over midwicket.
The introduction of off-spinner Emily Starr to the attack in the 11th over helped stem the flow as she bowled a consecutive 6-over spell that yielded 3 wickets for 25 runs, including both White (37) caught behind and Smith, bowled by a looping yorker just after bringing up her half-century.
Starr was instrumental, too, in Surrey’s late-order collapse, finishing with a catch and a run out to her name, leaving Extras (29) their third highest scorer and Surrey 8 wickets down at the end of their 29 overs.
Nonetheless Surrey’s total of 181 was always going to be an imposing one for a side whose highest score with the bat this season has been 127.
And while Northants kick-started their effort with successive boundaries in the first over from Amelia Gardner (17) through the off-side, her dismissal at the hands of Beth Kerins 6 overs in set the tone, as 5 Northants batsmen came and went by the 14th over.
Bethan Solomon (32*) and Meera Patel (19) shared a 32-run partnership for the 6th wicket but quickly fell well behind the required rate as the game eventually petered out to a slow conclusion.
For Surrey, it follows on from their annihilation of Derbyshire yesterday at the hands of Nat Sciver (180*) to leave the London-based club in the running for promotion to Division 1 as the Championship wraps up next weekend.