ENGLAND v NEW ZEALAND: 1st T20 – Beaumont Back To Her Best

139. That was the number of runs scored by Tammy Beaumont for London Spirit in The Hundred – 139 runs off 135 balls, leaving her 20th in the list for the competition. It wasn’t the worst return in the world, but for one of England’s biggest stars it wasn’t her at her best.

So this series was an important one for Beaumont. Not in an existential sense – she wasn’t going to be dropped, even if she didn’t score a run! But she definitely had a point to prove… and she proved it at Chelmsford this evening.

Beaumont’s 97 runs off 65 balls set up England for a huge win, despite another slightly iffy bowling performance. It wasn’t a flawless innings – she was dropped a couple of times – but T20 is a game where taking a few risks can be richly rewarded, and it was tonight.

She’ll be kicking herself she that didn’t get a second T20 hundred, caught off an attempted ramp for 97 from the penultimate ball of the innings. I continue to maintain that the premeditated ramp isn’t a productive shot for her – she used it (I think?) 4 times in this innings, and it came off just once – she made a mess of it twice; and was eventually caught off it when a century was within her grasp.

But at the end of the day, it’s not about exactly how many Tammy Beaumont scored – it’s about the runs the whole team put on the board. Sophia Dunkley in particular played a great little knock at the back-end of the innings – 23 not out off 17 balls. She didn’t score a single boundary until the 15th ball she faced, yet she still maintained a strike rate of 100, simply by turning the strike back over to Beaumont again and again – it was exactly what England needed from her.

With that many runs on the board, New Zealand were really up against it, and the early loss of both the “Smash Sisters” – Sophie Devine for 2 and Suzie Bates for 1 – left them reeling. They really need something from Amy Satterthwaite, and they got something… but it wasn’t quite something enough to make a real impact on the game. The difference between Satterthwaite and Beaumont – 54 runs – was pretty-much the difference between the two sides as a whole.

One caveat remains though. As happened against India earlier in the summer, you do feel that England got away with a fairly average performance with the ball. The scorecard will tell you that they took 10 wickets, but the Kiwis largely got themselves out, slogging as they chased the game.

England’s batters are all in great form – 5 of England’s top 6 ranked in the top 20 in The Hundred, with Beaumont the only exception; but the bowlers, frankly, are not where they should be, with only 2 of the 6 bowlers used today making their top 20. So it remains a concern that this attack are flattering themselves slightly at the moment – they will have to bowl a lot, lot better than they did tonight if they want to really challenge Australia in the Ashes and the World Cup this winter.

5 thoughts on “ENGLAND v NEW ZEALAND: 1st T20 – Beaumont Back To Her Best

  1. The cricket buzz word is “match-up” and I think that’s where England would struggle v Aussies.

    Our young player’s haven’t had enough international pressure game time and like NZ in big games England rely on a couple of big time players.

    This Ashes might be the last for some and too early for others, but with the right preparation England will be more competitive than say India or NZ

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  2. This series would have been a big struggle for the White Ferns anyway, but given the disparity in preparation – the England players coming off high-standard short-form cricket and the New Zealand players coming out of the NZ winter – I’m not at all surprised by the gap between the sides. I’ll be looking to see an improvement in NZ’s performances over the series.

    I feel like a bad Kiwi for saying this, but the international sides I’m really excited about at the moment are South Africa and Thailand! It was good to see Zimbabwe closely matched with Thailand, too.

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  3. Enjoyed the game, England were quite impressive throughout. Beaumont, Jones, Dunkley – brilliant. NZ didn’t seem to learn from their mistakes and on several occasions we saw 2 identical 4s in a row. Satterthwaite’s delay in changing to over the wicket was a puzzling one, round was never going to work. The wheels started to come off at times for NZ! Brunt and Ecclestone were excellent as they so often are. Even for the bowlers not in such good form – Glenn and Villiers – there were signs that may have started to turn a bit. Devine was always going to try and take the positives away, but I thought she was very optimistic in her post match interview! NZ were well short in this game.

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